The Atlanta Falcons are going to try to tap into their magic from the 2016-17 en route back to the playoffs this year. After going with a cornerback in the first round of the NFL Draft Thursday night, the Falcons have made it clear they are going to try to win with a high powered offense.
It would’ve been criminal if the Atlanta Falcons didn’t address their defensive line this offseason. And they did that with Dante Fowler, which is easily one of Thomas Dimitroff’s best free-agent signings during his time in Atlanta. But the Falcons also invested a lot offensively.
They went and got Todd Gurley, traded for a tight end, signed Laquon Treadwell, and signed an offensive lineman. That was the Falcons tipping their hands that offense was going to be their way of winning this year. And Atlanta would be smart to embrace that.
There are a lot of unknowns on the defensive side of the ball. But that might be just okay. The Falcons don’t need the defense to win games for them. They just need them to not lose them. It’s the equivalent of having a game manager at quarterback. Even if you don’t make that game-winning throw, don’t throw the game-ending pick-six.
The Falcons are going to have to score and score a lot this year to win games. Matt Ryan is going into his second year under Dirk Koetter, and we saw the jump he made in his second year under Kyle Shanahan. If the Falcons reflect even 75% of what that offense was, they will be in good shape.
Raheem Morris will be in his first year as the Falcons defensive coordinator. This defense will need some time to grow. The Falcons will have to figure out who is going to step up and ball or who they might have to move on from. And it’s going to be on the offense to steady the ship during this time.
If the Falcons can get out of the first half of the season at .500 or a game over, it’ll give their defense enough time to round into form. And that should be enough to help the Falcons make a deep run into the playoffs.