The “Atlanta curse” continues to haunt the Falcons.
On Sunday the Falcons explosive offense wasn’t enough to hold off the division rival, Saints. As New Orleans came out on top in overtime, 43-37.
However, this wasn’t the most disappointing thing that happened on Sunday.
The Falcons lost another important player on the defensive side, Ricardo Allen. It was announced Monday that the starting safety would miss the remainder of the season with an achilles injury that happened in overtime.
This is the third starter Atlanta has lost this season. Keanu Neal and Andy Levitre were hurt earlier in the season. Falcons are also going to be missing key defender Deion Jones for about six or eight weeks.
It was blatantly obvious in Sunday’s game that the Falcons were missing captains on the defense. Throughout the game against the Saints, it was clear that there was lots of confusion and times where the defense had no idea what was going on, which led to a high-scoring loss.
Drew Brees took advantage of the broken down Atlanta defense and threw for 396 yards and 5 total touchdowns. Hopefully, this wasn’t a preview of what’s to come the remainder of the season.
On Monday, Dan Quinn said that the Falcons aren’t planning on signing or trading for starting defensive players to fill these roles according to Vaughn Mcclure. Atlanta will most likely lean on Damontae Kazee, Jordan Richards and Kemal Ishmael at the safety position. Weeks two and three Duke Riley has filled in for Deion Jones.
The good news is, the Falcons offense has looked great during weeks two and three. After arguably one of his worst games in his career week one, Matt Ryan has been on point the past two weeks slinging it for a combined 646 yards and seven touchdowns. On Sunday, Ryan showed doubters signs of “MVP Matt” with his deep ball finally connecting multiple times.
The entire offense has been involved, however, the star rookie has been the most impressive. Calvin Ridley has made his mark in the NFL quickly. Ridley has four touchdowns and has picked up 210 yards on 11 receptions in the early season.
Julio Jones continues to prove why he is arguably the best wideout in the league, however, he has yet to get a touchdown in the first three games.
The running game has also been fairly good, even with starter Devonta Freeman out. Tevin Coleman has carried must of the load with 40 attempts resulting in 159 yards. Rookie, Ito Smith, has also made some big plays in his limited runs.
The offense has looked good on almost every aspect. The pass blocking has still sometimes been suspect but progression is there. However, the offense is going to be asked to do a lot more every game now with defense being hurt.
The young defense is going to have to learn fast if the Falcons want to still be contenders this year.
Hopefully, the Falcons are able to get over the injury bug and able to show their true potential with the highly talented team.
Daric Clemens | @DClemens_