This weekend is a big game for the Falcons and the Falcons’ fans. We take on our rivals, the New Orleans Saints. This rivalry has been heated for years, but now that both the Falcons and the Saints are playing good football, the rivalry has taken on a whole ‘nother degree of intensity. The Saints have been the better team, making it to the Super Bowl and winning it not too long ago. The Falcons had the best record in the NFC last year and are looking to get close to that record again this year. Most importantly though, this game decides who will be in first place in the NFC South.
I read on Twitter that someone predicted the Falcons to win 24-23. I like that score, but I would give the Falcons another touchdown. Why? The Falcons have one of the best red zone scoring offenses in the NFL. The Saints have THE worst red zone defense in the NFL. I always thought that the Saints had a highpowered offense but an average to below-average defense. This year, the Saints’ offense doesn’t look as threatening as it did in years past. They have gotten better at the role formerly used by Reggie Bush by adding scat back Darren Sproles. He leads the Saints in rushing and in receptions. The Falcons’ linebackers will have to contain him. Also dangerous is the tight end Jimmy Graham, who Drew Brees will look for often. Other than that, the receivers for the Saints are good but can be contained by Grimes and Robinson.
The Falcons are playing better for several reasons. One reason is that the Falcons have gotten back to what they do best; running the ball. Michael Turner is running well and Jacquizz Rodgers is easing into his scat back role. This has allowed Matt Ryan to throw the ball and become more of a game manager than a QB that has to rely on his arm the entire game. Juliooooo Jones had a monster game last week, linking up with Ryan for a 50 yard TD and an 80 yard TD. He has shown incredible speed and incredible hands, this after he was said to need work on his hands. The Saints will have to contain Julio, which will allow Roddy White and Tony Gonzalez to get open.
This game is shaping up to look good for the Falcons. I think that the Falcons have more weapons than the Saints, and can better defend the Saints’ weapons than the Saints can defend ours. Also, I believe our defense is better. We should be able to contain the Saints’ running game, which will allow us to use 7-8 players in coverage to shut them down. The key to this victory is to keep Drew Brees on the ground and the ball out of his hands, even though I believe Brees is not as good this year as he used to be.
Expect the Falcons to stick to the formula they’ve been winning with. Michael Turner should have a 100-yard game and our defense should have fun with the Saints’ offense.
Falcons 28, Saints 24
About the Author
Written by Josh Brown
I'm a 20 year old college student from Atlanta, GA who loves sports. Blogger for the Atlanta Falcons.