ATLANTA – We have officially reached the final stages of this season, where the Falcons have to rise if they are to seriously fight for a playoff spot.
That should start on Sunday against the Pittsburgh Steelers, a team with some talent but a record that suggests some struggles.
This was an opportunity to get a win and some momentum to close out the year.
The Falcons didn’t take advantage of the opportunity Sunday at Mercedes-Benz Stadium. They left Week 13 with a 19-16 loss to Pittsburgh, the last game before their bye week.
Let’s go deeper into what stands out in this contest:
Late surge not enough
The Falcons dropped several points in the third quarter of a game they desperately needed, looking out of sorts on both sides of the football. This may interest you : 3’11” Mais cheerleader is a great inspiration to others.
Then they are back in action. They scored a touchdown in an eight-play drive, focused on the run (more on that later), forced a three-and-out, and then when a long, productive drive was ultimately stymied by a penalty that ended with a field goal field that cut the deficit to three points.
The Steelers got the ball back with 5 minutes, 27 seconds remaining and were able to drive the ball downfield, down the field. The Steelers ultimately opted to punt, and pinned the Falcons at their own 2-yard line with 42 seconds remaining.
Mariota threw an interception on the next play from scrimmage sealing a dramatic loss for the second straight week.
Falcons flip the script, then go back to it
Falcons flip the script, then get back to it
This year’s offense has been heavy. On the same subject : Bears back on top with the MIL cheerleading championship. The Falcons are really good at moving the ball on the ground, thanks to the scheme and talent, and they have committed to slowing down drives and points that run the ball.
The passing game is mainly a piece of accent, which must be effective when called. On Sunday, the Falcons passed more than they ran during the first half and in the second, without much success. Quarterback Marcus Mariota completed a decent percentage, but he missed some throws and the offense struggled to find a rhythm.
After 13 points later in the third quarter, the Falcons went back to what they are good at. He ran seven straight times in an eight-play drive that resulted in his first trip into the red zone and his first touchdown. That unit found the Falcons in this one, running well despite facing one of the league’s top defenses.
Drake London gets involved
The Falcons are typically a run-heavy team, but they came out and threw a lot more in the first half on Sunday. To see also : DA blasts Louisiana cop charged in crash that killed two teenage cheerleaders: ‘Stop the damn chase’. Rookie wide receiver Drake London was a frequent target in that one, a bigger share than he typically gets.
The No. 8 overall pick had tons of targets and made the most of those within his catch radius. London finished with xx catches for xx yards on xx carries – both were career highs – while constantly creating separation. This marks the first time he has topped 50 receiving yards since Week 3.
It was an important development in the second game without Kyle Pitts, who was ruled out the rest of this season after having knee surgery. London is often the primary receiver, but he has coverage so the ball goes elsewhere.
The ball came to him, and he was able to take advantage of the opportunity. He will have to continue to do so if the Falcons are able to consistently produce wins.
Call for questions
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