The Atlanta Falcons first game Sunday afternoon wasn’t pretty.
However, if you’re looking for a positive, it’s the Atlanta Falcons receiving core. Atlanta, in fact, might have the best one-two combination in the league. And if Russell Gage performs like he did today, they won’t have a need to bring in anyone else, mainly Mohamed Sanu.
The Falcons let Laquon Treadwell walk this offseason. A former first-round pick and a guy that just hasn’t gotten it together during this time in the league. The lack of preseason didn’t give fans a chance to see what he brought to the table but the Falcons were confident moving on without him.
And on Sunday, despite their inability to score at times, their decision looked justified. Julio Jones balled out with nine catches and 157 yards. That’s against a Seattle defense with the newly signed Jamal Adams and Co. (Which, Adams was a problem all day.) But we know what Jones brings to the table. There are very few if any cornerbacks that are going to shut him down. Regardless of coverage.
Atlanta Falcons had three receivers gain over 100 yards Sunday afternoon.
But it’s always been about what the other guys were going to do. Calvin Ridley is playing his way to a massive extension. While he might not have the size to eventually be the number one, he can always be a top tier number two. Him, Jones, and Gage all got 12 targets and what did Ridley do with his? Nine catches, for 130 yards and two scores.
If Atlanta can get that type of production from their second guy, defenses won’t be able to tee off on Julio. But the biggest shocker might be Gage’s production. Nine catches, for 114 yards. Don’t expect the Falcons to be putting the ball in the air 54 times a game. But when they did turn to the air raid against the Seahawks, their younger guys stepped up to the plate and answered the call.
And against probably one of the toughest defenses they’ll see this season, that’s a good start.