3 Games that doomed Arthur Smith's Atlanta Falcons in 2023

Atlanta Falcons v New Orleans Saints
Atlanta Falcons v New Orleans Saints / Chris Graythen/GettyImages
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2. Week Fifteen Panthers-9 Falcons-7

The previous week Arthur Smith let a game to Tampa and Baker Mayfield slip away yet again. The season was on the line and the Falcons simply needed to beat Carolina to feel they were in control of their playoff destiny. You cannot have an easier setup for your team than playing the worst roster in the league.

Bryce Young has looked lost all season and this is a team that knew they were heading home at the end of the season long ago. Yes, Ryan Nielsen's defense let the Panthers put together a final put-away drive. However, you limit the Panthers to a single touchdown and in the biggest game of your tenure, you manage seven points!

You're a head coach hired due to your offensive play calling and against a team that has clearly already given up on the season you lose because you can't score more than 7 points. This was an ugly game that should have ended Smith's tenure right there.

It was another layup to bounce back after losing a game they shouldn't have a week ago. Just as was the case against the Vikings not only did Smith's team fail to bounce back but they did so in the worse fashion. This game alone was enough to fire Smith and move on.