A small margin for error leaves the Falcons doomed when things go awry

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laiyongcai92
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A small margin for error leaves the Falcons doomed when things go awry

Post by laiyongcai92 » Tue Nov 20, 2018 7:00 am

In what was billed as a matchup between two desperate teams http://www.atlantafalconsteamonline.com ... ley-jersey , only one team looked capable of getting back on track. A few self-inflicted mistakes kept the Pittsburgh Steelers from going into halftime with a bigger lead. Although Dan Quinn’s group bounced back in the second quarter, they were second best in every department. Ben Roethlisberger’s shaky first half gave the Falcons momentum going into halftime. A disastrous second half quickly erased their hopes of pulling off an upset.The second half encapsulated what most feared about the Falcons going forward. If the offense isn’t firing on all cylinders, they will struggle to stay competitive against talented teams. For all of Pittsburgh’s issues, they still possess one of the better rosters in the league. An offense with their plethora of playmakers can punish any defense. When Desmond Trufant was forced out of the game, it rendered them hopeless in trying to contain Antonio Brown. What happened defensively isn’t nearly half as bad as what transpired offensively.Pass protection implosion When previewing this game, it seemed like the only way the Falcons’ offense could stumble is if Matt Ryan was under serious duress. Pittsburgh is notorious for running a wide variety of blitzes and twists. With their back seven struggling all season, Mike Tomlin must have figured they needed to bring pressure at all costs. They don’t have the personnel to cover Julio Jones, Calvin Ridley, and Mohamed Sanu. Instead of devising coverage schemes to contain them, why not run blitzes from different angles and see if they can knock Ryan out of rhythm? It proved to be a fantastic game plan.The Falcons could never adjust to Pittsburgh’s relentless pressure. On every third and long, they brought five or six to collapse the pocket. Targeting Tevin Coleman’s inability to pick up blitzes was something they had great success in. With the offensive line slow to react and Steve Sarkisian failing to make any genuine adjustments, it left Ryan helpless in trying to make plays downfield.To allow six sacks and 11 hits against an average at-best Steelers front seven is problematic. While some sacks came off play action and freak moments, there was still plenty of pressure being created up front by a pure four-man rush. The offensive line simply lost far too many individual battles. After failing to open any running lanes on first down, they would get pushed around on the inside or beaten around the edge on the next two plays. Ryan Schraeder struggled to stay in front of T.J. Watt for most of the game. If he wasn’t getting blown off the line of scrimmage, Watt dipped under him to make the normally steady right tackle look overmatched.Schraeder isn’t the only highly regarded lineman showing signs of regression. Alex Mack isn’t playing anywhere near the All-Pro level everyone is accustomed to seeing from him. Those outstanding second-level blocks to spring open big runs aren’t happening this season. His tendency of getting overpowered in pass protection is starting to become more noticeable. By allowing three sacks in the last three games, which includes Cameron Hayward humiliating him, it’s fair to question if Mack’s best days are behind him. Other than Jake Matthews, there isn’t any other offensive lineman playing up to expectations right now. That needs to quickly change for the offense to succeed against more-aggressive defensive fronts.New week, same defensive issuesThe undermanned defense was always going to face an uphill battle in this matchup. After looking out of sorts against Baltimore, Pittsburgh was bound to produce explosive plays across the field. Roethlisberger and Brown were going to get back on track at some point this season. To do it against a defense struggling to muster a pass rush shouldn’t be viewed as a major surprise. The loss of Trufant certainly allowed Brown to shine, as both of his touchdowns came when the former Pro Bowler was sidelined.Besides not generating much pressure, there are multiple weekly habits causing the defense to play even worse. Tackling continues to be a significant problem on all three levels of the defense. On third-and-thirteen http://www.falconsauthorizedshops.com/a ... ell-jersey , Pittsburgh ran a designed screen for James Conner. That shouldgreatly benefit the defense, which is trying to get off the field at all costs. It was only a ten-point game when the play was called. Brooks Reed ends up being in fine position to stop Conner from accelerating into the open field. The veteran edge rusher fails to wrap him up, along with two other defenders. What should have been a seven-yard gain turns into a massive 28-yard play. The defense never recovered from that mistake.It wasn’t the only costly missed tackle. Per Pro Football Focus’ Pat Thorman, Conner forced a whopping 12 missed tackles. Duke Riley was on the receiving end of a few nasty runs. After two consecutive decent games, the enigmatic second-year player had a dreadful performance. His inability to wrap up on a consistent basis must be concerning for the coaching staff. The same applies to Brian Poole, who is missing open-field tackles at a rapid rate. What made Poole into a reliable contributor over the last two seasons was his excellent instincts in zone coverage and knack for making big tackles in the open field. Neither of those qualities have been shown this season.Third down woes and “next man up” aren’t going awayNot being able to generate pressure or properly tackle on a consistent basis will make any defense prone to falling short on third down. It showed in Pittsburgh converting nine of 12 third-downs. They barley a sweat while converting them as well. Other than Reed unleashing his trademark spin move to force an in-completion, Roethlisberger was comfortable in the pocket. The front seven couldn’t cope with Pittsburgh’s terrific offensive line, particularly when they ran power designs.With the defense lacking difference-makers, it has forced the coaching staff to rotate heavily and hope for someone to break out. Steven Means, Michael Bennett IV, Bruce Carter, and Sharrod Neasman all played on Sunday. These are four players who weren’t on the opening day roster. They are now being given significant snaps four weeks later. That’s the obstacle the Falcons face at this stage of the season. Not having four of their arguably most valuable defensive players leaves them grasping for straws. There is only so much you can expect from a defense relying on players that were deemed not good enough by 32 teams a month ago.Looking AheadThe Falcons face a pivotal two-game home stretch. After facing a slew of playoff teams and what appears to be a very good Bengals’ team, they have two very winnable games coming up. Matchups against the Bucs and Giants gives them an excellent opportunity to get back on track before the bye. The offense should get back to their prolific ways against two woeful defenses. Although there isn’t much optimism surrounding the defense, Grady Jarrett could possibly return against the Giants. There are no easy games left on the schedule, given the difficult circumstances surrounding the team. That doesn’t mean they can’t come out on top against two similarly imbalanced teams. In October, the Tennessee Titans lost to the lowly Bills, 13-12. On Sunday, they smacked the Patriots, 34-10.The latter is by far the more surprising of the two. The Titans aren’t a team most would see on their schedule and mark it down as a big or tough game. And well, the Patriots are the Patriots. They’re the greatest dynasty the NFL has ever seen.The Patriots weren’t the Patriots on Sunday. Tom Brady looked human, completing just 21 of his 41 pass attempts for 254 yards and no touchdowns. When he’s not playing well, everything falls apart for New England because he makes everybody around him better.Marcus Mariota had a solid afternoon Youth Keanu Neal Jersey , completing 16 of 24 passes for 228 yards and two touchdowns. On the ground, Derrick Henry and former Patriot Dion Lewis combined for 115 yards, with Henry having a pair of touchdowns. We’ll get back to Lewis later.The Titans jumped out to a 14-3 lead midway through the first quarter, and never really looked back from there. But the Titans’ victory came some trolling, which made the win seem even stranger than it already was.Down 27-10, the Patriots ran a trick play where Julian Edelman (he used to play quarterback, did you know? LOLOL) threw Brady a pass. Brady caught it, and fell to the ground like a child taking their first steps:The Patriots weren’t able to make anything of the drive. Less than a minute later, the Titans saw a good opportunity for a damn good troll job:It’s one thing to troll a team with a petty timeout, or some bait-y quote before or after a game. But the Titans brought the troll to the field, so very quickly after the Patriots ran the same play. That’s a supreme flex.You wouldn’t think a team would have the gall to do that against the Patriots. Though perhaps it’s not so surprising when you consider Titans head coach Mike Vrabel played for the Patriots under Belichick for years.Vrabel confirmed the the flex after the game:He’s not the only former Patriot who took a dig at his former team. Let’s revisit our friend Dion Lewis:For a pair of other former Patriots on the Titans, it wasn’t that deep. Which isn’t nearly as fun, but to each his own:The Titans’ win is one of the weirdest we’ve seen this season. It’s probably a close second to the Bills running all over the Vikings in Week 3. It’s hard to imagine something topping that one.And come January, we’ll probably forget this even happened because once again, the Patriots are the Patriots.Let’s run through Week 10.The Falcons lost to the BrownsAs a Falcons fan, I would say typing the following is about to bring me pain. However, my soul went completely numb shortly after James White crossed the goal line in overtime of Super Bowl 51. Let us proceed.The Falcons went into Week 10 having won three games in a row after starting 1-4. The offense was clicking, and they made us think that a game like Sunday’s against the Browns could be one that they walk out of with a relatively chill win.The scenario, metaphorically drawn out (translated: here’s a meme, y’all):Of course, the Browns still got some Brownsing in because Browns game isn’t complete without a stupid blunder or two.Baker Mayfield started the game 9 of 9 for 121 yards and a touchdown when the Browns decided the best possible play to run in the moment on a first-and-10 from the Falcons’ 34-yard line was this:Not even the Falcons would disregard the No. 1 overall pick’s hot start to let [checks notes] Dontrell Hilliard throw a pass in Week 10.Things stayed fine for the Browns though. Nick Chubb had 20 carries for 176 yards and a touchdown. His longest run was this 92-yard touchdown, which is the longest in Cleveland Browns’ history:The least shocking thing in the world is that the Falcons were the team to give up that run. The Falcons are a team that doesn’t just settle for doing things bad. The Falcons will do them the worst Authentic Julio Jones Jersey , like a blown Super Bowl lead.Let’s go to Matt Ryan for his reaction:Mhm, yep. And just when you think things for the Falcons can’t get worse after the whistle, buddy, THINGS GET WORSE:Combine that with Baker Mayfield waking up on the right side of the bed, and the Falcons were doomed from the start: We’ll do it again next week, Falcons fans. Prepare your drink of choice.The Saints honored Dez Bryant by throwing up hella XsThe Saints signed Dez Bryant going into Week 10, and had to quickly place him on injured reserve after he tore his Achilles. That’s an unfortunately quick turnaround, but Bryant clearly made his impact felt among the team.During the Saints’ 51-14 demolishing of the Bengals on Sunday, Mark Ingram, Alvin Kamara, and Michael Thomas all did Bryant’s signature “throw up the X” celebration:Ingram, along with other Saints had said they would do so during the week. Once Bryant saw them, he obviously appreciated the gestures on Twitter:Bryant never played a game for New Orleans, but for the Saints to show so much love for him after such a short time is telling of the immediate bond. The chances seemed high that Bryant’s tenure could be a short-term thing for the Saints, and that could still be the case.But the chance for the two to pair up in 2019 certainly isn’t out of the question. Sunday’s display of solidarity with Bryant might even suggest it’s likely.Speaking of the Bengals, LOLThere weren’t a lot of good things to discuss in regards to the Bengals on Sunday. But this stat Fox threw up on head coach Marvin Lewis is just funny:via imgurLewis is the NFL head coach who has nine lives, much like a cat (no pun intended). It seems like he’s been on the hot seat the past decade, and yet, he prospers.And for as good as the Bengals have been under him at home for 1 p.m. starts, the Steelers still have his number.At least they aren’t the Browns, I guess.Nick Chubb would prefer not to sit next to Bob WylieBob Wylie is one of the best characters in the NFL. He’s got a stomach that bounces like an exercise ball when he yells “hut!” and he doesn’t believe in stretching muscles. During the Falcons-Browns broadcast on Fox, a clip from earlier in the season was shown of Wylie telling Nick Chubb to sit down so they could chit-chat. Wylie ultimately ended up sitting next to the rookie running back.Chubb was not comfortable:Chubb certainly looks less than pleased here Matt Ryan Jersey , when Wylie has popped a squat next to him:Personal space is important. Though I’d lowkey like to sit next to Bob Wylie and have a conversation, even if it wasn’t the most comfortable.Khalil Mack is still doing amazing thingsKhalil Mack is going to have some serious aging to do before he goes from this super-mega-beast of a football player to just Really Good. Even then, I imagine we’re still going to find most of what he does incredible.In the Bears’ 34-22 win over the Lions, Mack made Levine Toilolo and Taylor Decker look like small children on his way to this sack of Matthew Stafford:There’s just not a whole lot you can do about Mack when he gets a full head of steam like that. Condolences to Stafford.[Hurricane Chris voice] HALLE BERRRRAYYYYYYYYYYYYThe Rams have an audible that’s simply “Halle Berry” which appears to be a Jared Goff handoff to Todd Gurley:As you might imagine, Berry wanted some answers:Goff provided a very vague answer that left plenty of room for interpretation:We’ll leave it at that, but there are interesting replies from the Goff tweet. The Rams beat the Seahawks, 36-31, and are now 9-1 on the season.SCREAMQuenton Nelson had the pancake of the week against the Jaguars, and you’ll see the play below.More importantly, Nelson just decided to scream his ass off along the way, which certainly doesn’t hurt, and is kind of hilarious:That’s Barry Church on the receiving end of the scream and leveling. I would say I feel bad for the man, but Nelson let him know that he was coming with that howl.You kinda gotta be prepared when the siren is going off like that. The Colts beat the Jaguars, 29-26, and the AFC’s runner-up from 2017 is now 3-6.Your QB1 could neverThere’s not a whole lot to be said here except that Pat Mahomes is now emperor of the world in this Starter jacket:That’s some Big Drip from the rook. Mahomes didn’t have one of those stupid games where he makes his stats ooze out of the box score, but still completed 21 of his 28 passes for 249 yards and two touchdowns against the Cardinals in a 26-14 win. The job was done, and the sauce was displayed.They’re on to Los Angeles (Rams).A big weekend moodSee y’all next week.OTHER THINGS FROM WEEK 10 IN THE NFLThe Chargers and Raiders played, despite heavy smoke from wildfires. Christian D’Andrea goes over why the Patriots’ loss to the Titans shouldn’t be a big concern.The Buccaneers had 501 yards of offense. It resulted in THREE points.Derek Carr throwing the ball away on 4th down is all you need to know about his season.Andrew Whitworth donated his entire game check to victims of the Thousand Oaks shooting.

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