During the first Atlanta Falcons preseason game, there were a few players who really stood out, one of them being Jaylinn Hawkins.
Hawkins flew around the field and showed why he should be in line for more snaps on defense going into his sophomore year with the Falcons.
However, among all the good he did, there was also one mistake that almost resulted in an embarrassing result for him and the team.
The play in question came when the Atlanta Falcons were trying to halt the Titans’ offense right before the end of the half, and Jaylinn Hawkins blitzed up the middle resulting in a sack and an excessive celebration.
Atlanta Falcons young players should take note of this
Most people who were watching the Atlanta Falcons at that moment would have seen Jaylinn Hawkins blasting Logan Woodside for a sack, but then Hawkins proceeded to celebrate a little too much.
Hawkins decided that he would continue running towards the Titans side of the field, and celebrate. Dorian Etheridge followed him, but Etheridge did what Hawkins failed to do, he realized that they needed to get back on their own side of the field. If the Titans’ offense had been in sync, they could have snagged a free five yards off of Hawkins.
This did not result in any harm to the Falcons defense, since the Titans ended up calling a timeout.
However, if this was a regular-season game and an experienced quarterback like Ryan Tannehill was playing, they would have run up to the line and snapped the ball. Of course, this would have gifted the Titans a free five yards off of an offsides penalty.
This was an inexcusable mistake, and the fact that it was right before the end of the first half makes it even worse. The offense is already in a no-huddle tempo, making it that much easier for them to catch you offsides.
Luckily for Jaylinn Hawkins, it resulted in no harm, and it was also just a preseason game.
If nothing else, it provides a great example for Arthur Smith and Dean Pees to show the team what not to do. If this would have happened in a regular-season game, it would have been much worse.
Some may remember that this is not the only time something like this has happened in the NFL.
In a much worse scenario, Khalil Mack and Sio Moore sacked Chiefs quarterback, Alex Smith, near the end of the game when the Raiders had to stop the Chiefs from scoring to win the game in 2014. Mack and Moore proceeded to celebrate for a ridiculously long time.
Their teammate, Justin Tuck, was forced to call a timeout because Alex Smith lined up to snap the ball while the two of them were still ten yards in the backfield celebrating.
The Atlanta Falcons coaches can use these two plays to keep the players from making the mistake again.