3 New Orleans Saints the Falcons must slow down in week one
By Nick Halden
To say the Atlanta Falcons are facing a must-win game the first week of the season might be an exaggeration. However, for a team that is set to play the reigning super bowl champion Rams in week two, it is certainly a huge game for the Falcons if they hope to take a step forward this season.
For Atlanta, a step forward is matching last year’s win total knowing this is a step forward for a team that lost Matt Ryan and is dealing with a massive dead cap hit. Add in a very difficult schedule and if the Falcons manage to find six or seven wins this season it will be considered a success.
Splitting the season series with the Saints would be a huge win as well considering that New Orleans is considered a wildcard contender. The Saints somehow managed to wipe away their cap issues this off-season bringing in impact-free agents and keeping their core intact.
Quarterback Jameis Winston is returning off injury and should be an upgrade over the tight-end and career backups New Orleans was forced to turn to last season. Winston’s 1-5 record against the Falcons in his last six starts is certainly an encouraging statistic. Interestingly enough Winston’s one win in those six games came during the 2016 season that would end with Atlanta winning the NFC.
New Orleans has a lot of talent on their roster, however, there are three players, in particular, the Falcons must slow down if they want a chance to pull off the week one upset.