Five things to watch in Week 2 contest vs. Tampa Bay – Atlanta, Georgia

Atlanta, Georgia 2021-09-19 04:57:07 –

Tori McEl Honey

Atlanta-Every weekend’s goal is to get 1-0. This is one of the main clichés of this sport. Treat it like a new start every week. But if you’re the Falcons playing against the dominant Super Bowl champion after losing to Eagles 32-6 last week … is that goal too high? Is it enough to show obvious improvement in a particular area?

Indeed, that first goal is there. But if we are realistic, the Falcons often clean up from week 1 to week 2. The player knows that. The coach knows that. This is not a secret. So what are the most important areas to improve in the second week? Here are five things to think about going to the Sunday match.

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McEl Honey: One comment from Arthur Smith, I couldn’t let go of the big debate: Was the Falcons Early Run Game vs Philly a Mirage? Bair Mail: Who will win for Matt Ryan, Grady Jarrett, Quick Fix and long-term projects?Falcons or Buccaneers: Expert Pick 1. Limit penalties

Falcons need to perform cleaner operations. Arthur Smith said he could sometimes accept a breakdown of technique and fundamentals, but it’s a pre-snap penalty to keep him at night. And that was a problem for Atlanta last week. There were too many penalties for false starts and illegal formations.

“If you make the mistake we made, you deserve to lose,” Smith said.

I also have something to say about the timeliness of these penalties. The Falcons had a lot at the expense of some coveted first down. It is imperative that Atlanta survive Sunday’s losses, leaving these penalties.

2. Aggressive line upgrade

Earlier this week, Smith said he wasn’t the type to “push the wheels” when something first didn’t work. He always said he was the one who tried to give the men the opportunity to correct their mistakes. That’s why Jalen Mayfield is still the Falcons and starts a left guard against Tampa.

“He did enough this week to justify getting another opportunity,” Smith told Mayfield on Friday.

The Falcons brought in two veteran guards this week, but for the time being it’s still a spot for Josh Andrews and Mayfield in the IR. And while many people are looking at new linemen, the entire group should also be checked. Perhaps Matt Hennessy and Caleb McGarry don’t need as important a second week improvement as Mayfield, but they need to limit their mistakes.

If the Falcons Offensive Line 1st week issue was carried over to Tampa in the 2nd week, it would be a long day for Matt Ryan. This is a better defensive front than the Eagles had. The challenge to this aggressive line will not go away. Increases the intensity.

3. Dante Fowler requires pockets on defensive end

Defense coordinator Dean Peas made some interesting points following the defeat on the first day. From his point of view, he felt like the Falcons sometimes had good pressure and kicked Jalen Hurts out of his place. However, it was on the other side of the rush that the Falcons missed the mark.

“[Quarterback]isn’t going to run away from the pressured side,” Peas said. “… we got what we wanted. We got an escape, but (defensive end) didn’t keep the opposite edge as he needed. “

Much of this is for Fowler, Stephen Means, and Jacob Twioti Mariner to hold the specified edge.

Well, this particular point is probably not as big a factor as last week. Tom Brady and Jalen Hurts are, after all, two completely different quarterbacks. But that doesn’t mean that this development isn’t important. It will be important in the future as the Falcons face more quarterbacks where they can change the game with their feet. Perhaps Brady isn’t going to take off on a 15-20 yard run on Sunday, but someone will go the way. Therefore, Falcons need to respond to this improvement sooner, not later.

4. More targets for Kyle Pitts and Russell Gauge

Two of the main questions fans have asked since Sunday are: 1) Where was the Russell gauge? 2) Where was Kyle Pitts in the Red Zone?

Smith answered both questions throughout the week. To get started, he said he needed to do a better job to get the playmakers (ie Gauge and Pitts) involved faster. Smith especially felt that a gauge that had two targets and a zero catch could benefit early from the targets.

Regarding Pitts in the Red Zone, Smith said he always intended to give the ball to the best players. “But if something happens, the next man has to do it.” Perhaps the Eagles didn’t make the Falcons look like they wanted to throw a pit inside the 10-yard line, but that’s one of the reasons the Falcons chose the pit as the fourth pick in the draft. .. Red zone threat. Of note is how Falcons can leverage more capital in the field, both in pits and gauges.

5. Speaking of red zone …

Falcons did not record a touchdown on Sunday. You probably didn’t need that reminder, but it’s here anyway.

The excuse for Falcons’ limited success in the preseason Red Zone could have been that we hadn’t seen the first attack. Indeed, the first attack will enter the end zone more easily. But when the regular season came, they didn’t. The whole unit (and Smith) knows that this needs to be changed quickly.

This was the main story of the Falcons in 2020, which must be crushed in 2021. Teams cannot live on field goals alone. And if the Falcons want to compete with the Super Bowl champion this Sunday, Field Goal won’t cut it. Brady intends to touch down, no matter how good the defense is. Defense can only be taken by the team so far. Georgia, which defeated Clemson two weeks ago without an aggressive touchdown, was an exception to the rules.

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