The Atlanta Falcons will take on the Washington Commanders today with kick-off set for 1:00 EST on CBS. Still trailing in the NFC South behind Tampa Bay by a game with New Orleans having a very winnable game and the same record as the Falcons making this a pivotal home game for Atlanta.
With a very winnable schedule ahead the Falcons can't afford to drop a game to a struggling Washington team coming off of a loss to Justin Fields and Chicago. With the positive steps we saw Desmond Ridder and the Atlanta offense take last week this game clearly has the Falcons as the favorite.
With Atlanta not being on FOX or ESPN+ for the first time this season this game will feature the return of a former franchise player as well. Former Atlanta quarterback Matt Ryan will be in the CBS booth on the call giving Falcons fans a unique viewpoint in a bittersweet reunion.
Ryan was forced out of Atlanta two seasons ago after the Falcons made it clear they were moving on chasing Deshaun Watson. After one failed season with the Colts Ryan made the move to the broadcast booth while making it clear he was willing to return to the game in the right situation.
Arthur Smith's decision to move on from Ryan is yet to pay off with the team struggling with Marcus Mariota and Desmond Ridder as the starters each of the last two seasons. Ridder's impressive game five this season, however, has Atlanta fans hopeful that the quarterback struggles are at an end and perhaps the team has found a long-term option.
For Washington, this game is going to be about which version of Sam Howell shows up and whether or not he can move the ball against a talented Atlanta secondary. Barring a huge game from Howell or Chase Young Atlanta will win their second straight giving Atlanta fans hope that perhaps this season will prove to be different.