Atlanta Falcons: Qadree Ollison must be part of the scheme moving forward

The Atlanta Falcons need Qadree Ollison in short yard situations.

Last week when the Atlanta Falcons took on the Seattle Seahawks, running back Qadree Ollison was inactive. Since he was not listed on the injury report in Week 1 or on the Week 2 injury report, the only assumption is that they did not want to carry four active running backs.

However, that decision backfired the moment they tried to run Brian Hill in short yard situations.

Running backs Todd Gurley, Ito Smith, and Brian Hill are all very similar in running styles and abilities – Ollison is not at all similar. He is the big bruising back that can follow a fullback into a hole and pick up the yards that the Falcons need whether it on the goal-line or just a short-yardage situation.

Last week, the Atlanta Falcons were 0-4 on fourth down attempts. On three of those attempts, the Falcons had three or fewer yards to gain. On all four attempts, Dirk Koetter had Matt Ryan drop back to pass because Gurley, Smith, or Hill are not the type of running back that can bruise their way to a first down.

This was an issue last year as well for the Atlanta Falcons.

Last season, Ollison was inactive for the first eight weeks of the season. However, he ended up with 9 carries that required three or fewer yards and he scored four touchdowns and picked up five first downs. In every short yardage situation last season that involved him, he delivered. They missed that against the Seahawks last Sunday.

We can keep saying that offense wasn’t the problem in Week 1 because the Atlanta Falcons had nearly 500 yards of offense but the fact remains that situational offense led by terrible game planning and scheming was a huge problem and has to be corrected immediately.

Regardless of what the defense does the rest of the season, the offense has to be more efficient and has to sustain drives in order to give the defense a break. Seven of the Falcons 12 drives were six or fewer plays and 10 of the 12 drives were less than 10 plays.

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Having a short-yardage back available could have changed a lot of variables in this game and that is something that the offensive staff has to consider moving forward.