Atlanta Falcons have to find their swagger
Sunday was odd without the Atlanta Falcons on television. Sure, they played in primetime on Thursday, but football fans get into a routine when the season starts, so Sunday was weird.
The good news is no Atlanta Falcons meant Sunday was a relaxing day. We all got the chance to watch a game or two Sunday without having our tempers flare or hearts stomped on.
However, watching games Sunday, I began to realize what the attribute that the Falcons were missing more than anything else.
Sure, this is a word used more times than it should and is a word most people over the age of 40 have never used. But it is an important attribute that the Falcons do not have and do not possess. They have a roster full of talent, but no swag. None.
Swag is one of the “it factors“. You cannot manufacture, develop or coach swag. A player either has it or he does not.
Deshaun Watson, Patrick Mahomes, Tom Brady, Lamar Jackson, and Mike Tomlin all have it.
Bill Belichick, Kyle Shanahan, Sean McVay, Aaron Donald, Khalil Mack, and Russell Wilson all have it.
Falcons have none of it. As good as Matt Ryan, Julio Jones, Grady Jarrett, and Deion Jones are, none of them have this quality and it matters. Sure you can argue it doesn’t or this is just something made up for clicks but is a tangible quality that champions have.
While some of the names mentioned do not have rings yet, people are confident in their ability to lead a team whereas Matt, Julio, and Grady do not get that same benefit.
Every Super Bowl-winning team has had at least one guy on their sideline with it. We use to call this the “it factor”, now its “swag”.
The Atlanta Falcons filter has been talked about a long time after the Vick debacle more than a decade ago. But that filter keeps the Falcons roster stocked with nice guys who are great athletes but lack that necessary intangible. Anyone that has ever played on a championship team knows you have to have that dude. The “I don’t give a F***” attitude.
While you could argue at 3-9 most of the players on the current roster seemingly don’t give a damn, it is not the same thing. Not caring about your current situation and playing the game with an uncoachable intangible are nothing alike.
Until Arthur Blank brings in a coach or players with that championship swagger, the Falcons franchise will never add a Lombardi to the trophy case.