The Falcons’ early offensive approach to taking on the Saints’ defense is simple Run it right down their throats.
On Thursday night in Atlanta, the Falcons’ opening drive consisted of just one pass (a nine-yard completion from Matt Ryan to Tony Gonzalez), with five runs: A 35-yard run by Michael Turner, a five-yard run by Turner, a pair of 14-yard runs by Jacquizz Rodgers, and then back to Turner for a three-yard touchdown.
When the Saints beat the Falcons for Atlanta’s only loss of the season so far, the Falcons managed just 46 yards on 18 carries for the entire game. On Thursday night, Atlanta got 71 yards on five carries on just the first drive.
The Saints’ first possession ended when Drew Brees threw a deep ball into the end zone that Atlanta’s Thomas DeCoud intercepted. Now the Saints’ defense is going to have to step up its tackling, or the Falcons could run away with it.