NFC Throwdown: Rise UP Falcons!
Falcons rise UP! Really pumped for this game Sunday. Gotta admit I’m nervous about Kaepernick and the 49er D but I’ve got really high hopes for this game.
First of all, the Falcons broke the curse last week. Albeit in terrifying, gut wrenching form in the fourth quarter. Nonetheless, they got that playoff win and I think the pressure comes off a little bit here. There’s no more fear of being ridiculed by the media for a full year if they lose this next game. 9ers are a stout team. They proved that against the Packs.
Here’s the Falcons upside in this matchup. Offense is firing on all cylinders and it sure as hell needs to be against the 49rs. What’s really encouraging is how good our run game looked last week. Jacquizz Rodgers basically screaming HOLD MY DICK as he broke 3 tackles in a Turner-esque run against a not too shabby Seahawks defense. That play alone gave me high hopes not only for the post season, but also the Falcons future run game. If Turner stays fresh and those two keep to a 50/50 split, I think the birds can establish a run game that will open up the pass.
Roddy is Roddy. Ultimate pro. Consistent and reliable. Matt Ryan’s go to man in 3rd down situations. The guy gets it done week in and week out. Julio’s a monster. Plain and simple. I mean a guy that can do this
has to put the fear of god into any DB or safety. Tony’s getting up there. He says he’s at 95%. I’ll take pretty much any first ballot hall of famer at 95% though and Tony’s got a vet head on his shoulders. Not to mention he wants it bad. The guy’s a living legend and he just now got his first playoff win. He wants that Lombardi. He looks humble in interviews and is a pretty reserved guy but a guy who went 15 seasons without a W in the postseason has to have some pent up rage.
Not a whole lot of great stuff to say on the defensive side. We’re relatively solid but rushing quarterbacks are not our forte and we tend to give up big plays to tough runners like Gore and deep threats. Abraham needs, I repeat needs to play and be close to 100%. He’s had two weeks of rest and keeping the pressure on Kaepernick is crucial to get the W.
Things I never thought I’d say at the beginning of the season: With Kaepernick under center the 49er offense is a force to be reckoned with.
Rushing QBs open up a ton of options in the offense. It makes Defenses hesitate, opens up holes for backs, and lets receivers get spacing. The thing about them is that they usually don’t last a whole season. Somebody gets banged up. The sum total of acting like a back takes its toll and your fundamentals get shaky. First you lose the pass, and then you fall apart completely and get a big time injury. Kaepernick’s pretty fresh. He’s only started in 7 games with 63 total rushing attempts and lots of them he goes untouched due to his speed.
Like I said, everybody gets better while Kaepernick’s on the field. Ho-hum Frank Gore is suddenly a big playmaker. Crabtree and tired old Randy Moss are deep threats when the secondary bites on the option-read. Crabtree has come into his own with the QB change though and is looking healthy and dangerous for YAC with fancy footwork. Vernon Davis, who in my opinion, is still a stellar player and possibly the best receiver on the team is underused in their offense. However, in Kaepernick’s starting debut, he showed that he could light it up when Davis isn’t blocking and he’s a tremendous dump out option.
My advice to the Falcons? Hit Kaepernick and hit him hard. Play contain the QB and make sure to not underestimate his speed. He’s the key to the viability of that offense and rattling him up is the best chance for the 9ers to make mistakes that the birds can capitalize on.
No need to go into the 9ers D. Bit of a shootout last week against the Packers but overall they only allow about 100 yards on the ground per game and they’re 4th in overall D in the NFL. They are going to make it tough to rush but the Falcons need to establish the run early and often to set up the PA and get space for the two Roddy and Julio. Also, I don’t want to see rushing in the red zone or Michael Turner trying to punch it in or pick up a 4th and short. It doesn’t work and it’s getting embarrassing when we pull that shit. 3 massive targets in the red zone and Turner doesn’t have the same punch he used to. THROW IN THE RED ZONE!
Bovada is giving the 49rs 5 points in this game. I think it’s going to be a little less of a shootout than the GB game and I like the (surprise!) Falcons here but I can see it going either way. I think 5 is a little generous considering the game’s in the Dome. To be fair the 49rs are hot but the Falcons just broke a curse that goes back to the ’99 super bowl loss to Denver.
Final Score Prediction: 23-20 Falcons
Dirty Birds Rise Up. And tell the 9rs to Get the Fuck Off Our Field!