Week 17 is already here and the Atlanta Falcons have a chance to finish the season 6-2 after starting out 1-7 and the laughingstock of the NFL.
With no postseason for the Atlanta Falcons, there will be plenty of time to dissect this season from what went wrong, who doesn’t fit and whether or not keeping the entire franchise intact is a good or bad thing.
What we do this week is the Atlanta Falcons are facing an anomaly of a quarterback in Jameis Winston.
Jameis leads the league in passing yards and interceptions. He has also been sacked and hit more times than any quarterback in the league yet their biggest loss was a 17-point home loss to the Saints in Week 11, six of the Bucs eight losses were by one possession.
The Falcons have played with an edge the last seven weeks as they were trying to save Dan Quinn’s job. Now that his job is safe, will they come out with that same fire or will the team that showed up the first eight weeks make a return?
Here is how the Blogging Dirty staff thinks the game will turn out.
Jeff Benedict – Site Expert
Jameis threw two interceptions the first time these two teams met a couple weeks ago and I suspect that he will throw a couple more this week as well. Can the Atlanta Falcons actually do something with those gifts and turn them into points?
Julio Jones has a chance to top 1,400 receiving yards for the sixth straight season if he has at least 84 yards on Sunday. He is the only player in NFL history to have five straight 1,400 yard receiving seasons. It looks like he and Matt Ryan decided a couple weeks ago to (bleep) what Dirk Koetter wanted and they were going to do their own thing and that has resulted in Julio turning the worst season of his career to one of his best.
The Falcons will win a close one and finish with their second consecutive 7-9 season.
- Falcons: 31
- Bucs: 27
In 2018 the Atlanta Falcons traveled to Tampa Bay for the last game of the season at a 6-9 record. Fast forward to 2019 and the Falcons find themselves in the same situation.
However, this time around the Buccaneers have been playing really well and will continue to do so on Sunday. Jamesis will throw three interceptions but the Bucs will still win by three scores.
- Falcons: 17
- Bucs: 34
The Atlanta Falcons look better as a whole throughout the second half of the season at 5-2. One of those losses came against the Tampa Bay Bucs.
The Bucs themselves are coming off a loss in which Jameis Winston is still on his quest for 30 touchdowns and 3 interceptions.
Without Mike Evans in the fold, this makes the job on defense a bit easier.
The play of the offense once again comes down to how well the offensive line performs. If they are able to keep Matt Ryan upright and open holes for the run game, the Falcons will look like a well-oiled machine.
I expect the Falcons to show up, force Winston to throw three interceptions and another big game for Julio
- Falcons: 31
- Bucs: 21
In the first meeting of the season, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers put up 35 points on an Atlanta Falcons defense that had played dominate football the two weeks prior. Once again, the Falcons come in to a match-up with the Bucs riding a winning streak. This time, however, the outcome will be different. The Falcons will win behind the legs of Devonta Freeman.
- Falcons: 28
- Bucs: 27