NFL Team Preview: Atlanta Falcons

The purpose of these previews is to provide a quick and dirty look at what the outlook is for each NFL team in 2019 according to my own philosophies and hot takes when it comes to pro football. That said, let’s take a quick report card look at where we came from, what’s expected, and the logic that drives my principles when evaluating NFL teams.

CategoryAtlanta
Division:NFC South
SB Odds:30/1
Division Odds (Moneyline):+320
2018 Rank Rushing Yds/Gm:27
2018 Rank Against the Run:25
2018 Rank Against the Pass:27
Returning Starters Offense:7
Returning Starters Defense:10

You may notice passing rankings are not included in my cute little NFL team report card. The reason for that is without at least one of, a top-10 ranked running game or top-10 defense, it generally does not matter how good your quarterback is. If you don’t believe me, read this genius’s irrefutable thorough analysis of elite quarterbacks, and how these two attributes correlate to their ability to win anything of note.

Now that you’re fully indoctrinated into my non-quarterback driven league cult, let’s do a quick run down of Atlanta’s significant roster takeaways for this season.

Impact Additions – Acquisitions that are projected to start or have major rotational roles in 2019

2: OG James Carpenter, OG Chris Lindstrom

Impact Losses – Departures that had started or had major rotational roles last season

3: CB Robert Alford, RB Tevin Coleman, OT Ryan Schraeder

Difference Makers – Players who are widely considered among the best at their position heading into 2019

9: RB Devonta Freeman, WR Julio Jones, WR Calvin Ridley, LT Jake Matthews, C Alex Mack, DE Vic Beasley, DT Grady Jarrett, LB Deion Jones, SS Keanu Neal

Potential Breakout Candidates – Second or third year players that are logical selections to make “the leap” in the upcoming season based on past performance

2: DE Tak McKinley, DB Isaiah Oliver

How it could work

As soon as I settled on Atlanta being my Super Bowl pick last season because of all the studs littered throughout the defense, God proved once again that he hates me by cursing them all with long-term injuries. Because, of course, my sports predictions rank high on God’s list of main concerns for mankind.

Whoops, I forgot… Peoplekind. Speaking of the good Lord, Jesus Fucking Christ! We are losing our fucking minds on this planet! God, if you’re reading, I’m ready to go now.

If this nonsense means progress to someone, that’s fine. But, that someone has to admit we are officially out of real problems. Thank you.

Anyway, the Falcons. Stay healthy in 2019 and you should be back in the good graces of everyone. That’s it.

Why it wouldn’t work

Especially you, Devonta Freeman. That’s what new offensive coordinator Dirk Koetter really needs if they want Atlanta’s offense to overwhelm people like it did during their Super Bowl season in 2016, when it ranked 5th in the NFL in rushing yards per game.

Freeman getting back to his Pro Bowl form, and getting tangible improvement from three new starters along the offensive line is imperative. Without those, and no established second fiddle after Tevin Coleman’s departure, Atlanta’s offense won’t have the upside to get them in the discussion as a real Super Bowl contender.

Favorite GIF to Represent Fan Base

Final Prediction

Other than Carolina, the Falcons are my favorite NFC future bet for 2019. On paper, they have just as much talent as the Eagles, Rams, and Saints of the world. And, it wasn’t that long ago when they were one play away from going back to the NFC Championship for the second consecutive year.

That’s the reason I loved them coming into last season. 2016 was all about winning in Chiefs like fashion by out scoring the opposition.

In 2017, after investing high draft picks in recent years on defense, Dan Quinn had his unit starting to resemble his masterpiece left behind in Seattle. Then, taking Calvin Ridley in the draft as a final toy for the offense, 2018 was gearing up to be another Super Bowl run season.

Then, as I mentioned, I ruined it for everyone by proclaiming them as my Super Bowl pick. I won’t do that again, but I’ll definitely go over 8.5 wins. And, I think they are one of the best values for their division and any championship bet.

Now, onto a team in the South with zero value for 2019, Tampa Bay.

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