Atlanta Falcons: Packers still can’t Rise Up with them

ATLANTA, GA - SEPTEMBER 17: Devonta Freeman (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
ATLANTA, GA - SEPTEMBER 17: Devonta Freeman (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images) /

The Atlanta Falcons opened their new Mercedes-Benz Stadium with a convincing 34-23 win over the Green Bay Packers to move to 2-0 on the season

It was incredibly similar to the last home game they played, down to the opponent. After closing out the Georgia Dome with a 44-21 victory over the high-octane Green Bay Packers, the Atlanta Falcons hosted the same team to open their new Mercedes-Benz Stadium. In front of a full house, they again outplayed the Packers en route to a 34-23 victory.

The game wasn’t as close as the final score would indicate though. With the Falcons in full control, they spent much of the fourth quarter just trying to milk the clock and send Green Bay home with their heads down low.

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That’s exactly what they did, and it had to feel great after a week of hearing how they nearly lost to the Chicago Bears. In Week 1 the Falcons needed a late sack from defensive end Brooks Reed to seal the 23-17 win, but they looked much more like the team we remember from last season in their home opener.

Quarterback Matt Ryan needed only 19 completions and 252 yards (with a touchdown and no turnovers) to get the job done.

That was because running back Devonta Freeman did most of the damage with two rushing touchdowns on 19 carries and 88 yards. Wide receiver Julio Jones got in on the fun with 108 yards on five catches, but it was backup running back Tevin Coleman who caught the lone receiving touchdown.

On defense Atlanta was also able to rise up. They finished with three sacks, but hit Green Bay quarterback Aaron Rodgers many more times and even returned a lateral pass fumble for a touchdown after Desmond Trufant scooped it up and ran it in.

Next: Highlights from Falcons vs Packers

It was a great showing by the Falcons and a reminder that the Packers still can’t rise up like they can.