The Atlanta Falcons are looking to bounce back this week, after last Sunday’s horrific performance against the Vikings. The Eagles are coming in off a win against the Washington Redskins. A game where the Eagles struggled for the majority of the game, but still were able to find a way to win. The Eagles are a team that have given the Falcons issues over the past couple of meetings. In fact the last time the Falcons defeated the Eagles was back in 2015 on Monday Nigh Football which was also the opening game of the 2015 season for the Falcons. This was also the last time the Eagles were in Atlanta as the past 3 meetings have all been in Philadelphia and all 3 times the Eagles won.
The key for Atlanta in this game is to have a balance attack offensively. Really nothing worked well for the Falcons in terms of the running game. Ito Smith had 31 yards and Matt Ryan had 24 yards rushing. Freeman was limited and could not get anything going. He also fumbled on one of the Falcons drive and that was it for him against Minnesota. The Falcons offensive line got whipped last week and has another tall task going up against the Eagles front seven. Rookie right guard Chris Lindstrom broke his foot and had surgery on his foot. He played part of the Minnesota game with a broken foot and will be out for 8 weeks. He is not eligible to return until Week 10. Earlier this week Dan Quinn announced that Kaleb McGary and Jamon Brown will start Sunday. Offensive linemen Matt Gono and Wes Schweitzer may play Sunday, but they both have been limited this week in practice.
Defensively the Falcons will be looking to stop the run. Last Sunday, Vikings only threw the ball 10 times. The rest of the time the Vikings just ran the ball and Dalvin Cook absolutely torched the Falcons defense. The Eagles will be looking to do the same with Darren Sproles and Jordan Howard this week as they helped the Eagles to rush for 123 yards against the Redskins. Falcons need to be better against the run and find a way to get pressure on Carson Wentz. The Falcons were able to get some pressure on Cousins but not enough. Takk McKinley and Vic Beasley need to have some sort of pass rush for the Falcons to be successful.
The last 4 meetings between the Falcons and Eagles have all been very weird as well as very close. I expect this one to be close again and I will give the Falcons the edge in this one. It was mentioned this week that the offense could run some no huddle which is a strong part of Matt Ryan’s game. Also keep an eye on Julio Jones who just needs 102 more yards to break Roddy White’s franchise record for career receiving yards. Kickoff against the Eagles is 8:20 and will be NBC. Fans attending the game please arrive early and wear red! Also follow @BirdsInTheBenz on twitter throughout the game and for all updates on the Falcons.
By: Stewart Zwald @SDZwald041599