3 Games on Atlanta Falcons schedule that could swing the season

Atlanta Falcons v Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Atlanta Falcons v Tampa Bay Buccaneers / Mike Ehrmann/GettyImages

Week 4 New Orleans vs. Atlanta Falcons

Looking at the layout of the Atlanta Falcons schedule arguably the biggest possible pivot for the season is week four. The first three weeks of the season the Falcons face the Steelers, Eagles, and Chiefs. Fair expectations would be a 1-2 record heading into week four.

With an easy finish at the back end, the Falcon simply need to survive the first portion of the season. Going 2-2 gives them this chance while a 1-3 start is going to be difficult to climb out of. New Orleans is a veteran that who is a concern based only on history and the hatred between the two teams.

On paper, the Falcons are a far more talented group and should win this game. However, that has been the case in the past on both sides and isn't how the game plays out. Atlanta needs to escape the first four weeks of the season at 2-2 and give themselves a chance to take advantage of an easy schedule at the end of the year.

Week 8 Atlanta Falcons vs. Tampa Bay Bucs

After week 8, the Falcons will have only two division games remaining after a front-loaded schedule. This game could be pivotal to steal despite being on the road in Tampa. Dallas comes to town after this game and will be almost assuredly heavily favored.

Winning this game gives you a margin for error ahead of playing the best remaining team on the schedule. It also offers the chance at division security. Even if you lose to the Bucs at home take care of business in week four and in your first matchup against Carolina.

If Atlanta does this and takes the second game from Tampa, they are in a great position to take the division title. It is important to remember that this Tampa team has won the division twice without having double-digit wins. It is going to remain a close race even if Atlanta struggles out of the gate. Winning the second matchup and going 3-1 in your first four division games should lock Atlanta into maintaining control over the division.

Week 14 Atlanta Falcons vs. Minnesota Vikings

Playing late in the season in Minnesota in a homecoming game for Kirk Cousins is going to be difficult. If, however, the Falcons can find a way to get it done they have a chance to win out and go into the playoffs hot.

After traveling to Minnesota the Falcons will play the Raiders, Giants, Commanders, and Panthers to end the season. If Kirk Cousins is healthy and playing up to expectations it would be surprising not to see Atlanta favored in each of these games.

If the Falcons beat the Vikings this should at worst, give them the chance to finish the season 4-1 and take momentum into the first round. Winning in Minnesota could set the tone for what should be a hot finish.