The Falcons got that elusive playoff win on Sunday, but it didn’t come easy and it didn’t come without a possible price in terms of health for the NFC Championship Game.
Defensive end John Abraham left early in the game and did not return because, per coach Mike Smith, he “retweaked” the left ankle that he sprained in Week 17 against Tampa. Smith said, via John Manasso of FOXSportsSouth.com, that Abraham was held out of the game for “precautionary” reasons.
That might have been the case when the Falcons were up by 20 points in the second and third quarters, but it’s difficult to think the Falcons wouldn’t have used Abraham if he was well enough to play in the fourth quarter. Coming into the game, Abraham was being described as being “80 percent” so it seems more likely that any tweak knocked him below the point where he was able to help the team.
The question now shifts to whether or not he’ll be well enough to play against the 49ers in next week’s NFC title tilt. It’s going to take all hands on deck to stop the Colin Kaepernick we saw on Saturday night if he shows up again in Atlanta.