No one wants to lose and no one wants to get blown out by their rivals.
However, losing in week 18 was, undoubtedly, the best outcome. It helps seal the fate of Arthur Smith who has been the biggest concern for the Atlanta Falcons all season long.
Atlanta Falcons had the best week 18 outcome
Thanks to another dud performance by the Carolina Panthers' offense, the Atlanta Falcons had no chance of making the playoffs.
Knowing that the playoffs weren't possible thanks to the other NFC South game, the Falcons had the best result.
While you never want to get destroyed by your rival, it does help seal the fate of the biggest issue with this team all year—Arthur Smith. Yes, Arthur Smith, not the quarterback.
Smith's scheme has been awful. He has been terrible at situational play calling and playing to the strengths of his players. All year long, his players have made mistakes after mistakes and the players are not learning from their mistakes. It has been the same storyline nearly every week.
When a team isn't improving, it lies on the coach. This team declined throughout the year and continually fell victim to the same mistakes.
By getting blown out by the Saints, thanks to those same mistakes, it gives owner Arthur Blank no choice but to fire his head coach.
I hate asking for someone to lose their job but sometimes it is necessary. This team is not good, especially when you compare it to their talent. Smith was not going to take this team anywhere, and holding on to him for another year would be another wasted year—another wasted year in the careers of Grady Jarrett, Drake London, Kyle Pitts, Bijan Robinson, etc.
The absolute worst thing that could have happened in week 18 is winning, not making the playoffs, and giving reason for Blank to reconsider firing Arthur Smith.