1. Kyle Pitts
Kyle Pitts is used more often as a blocker than the elite pass catcher that he is due to who the Falcons have started at quarterback, however, that is no reason for Pitts to change his level of effort. Twice on Sunday Pitts gave Atlanta fans reason to question his motor on plays that could have changed the game in Atlanta’s favor and kept them atop the NFC South.
The first play that stands out was a catch that should have been made Kyle doesn’t go up and fight for staying on the ground and letting the ball bounce harmlessly off of his hands. While it wasn’t a perfect throw it was a makable catch and one that Pitts should make in his sleep, especially with the space he had.
The second play was a deep ball in which Pitts seemed to be jogging at the end of the play and Mariota fought to create enough space to get it off. If Pitts is running full speed all the way through the play the Falcons have a chance to complete what would have been a game-changer.
Mariota gave Pitts a second deep ball as well that for some reason Pitts cut toward the sideline instead of using his straight-line speed for what would have been a touchdown. The Atlanta passing game is limited enough without their best receiver making these mistakes and showing this level of effort. For the Falcons to beat the Panthers on Thursday night Pitts has to be more engaged and show better effort.