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Falcons head to Clemson to learn some read-option

Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton runs the ball against the Atlanta Falcons during the first half of their NFL football game in Charlotte Reuters

Add the Falcons to the NFL teams going back to school this offseason, trying to get a read on the read-option.

Clemson coach Dabo Swinney (yes, that’s a real name in the South) said he and his staff met with the Falcons defensive staff recently.

“[The Falcons] are trying to learn more about what we do and how we defend what we do,” Swinney said, via D. Orlando Ledbetter of the Atlanta Journal Constitution. “Yet, we were able to take a lot from them as well. I’d be surprised if there’s an NFL team that hasn’t gone and spent time with college coaches this offseason.”

The Falcons play the Seahawks and 49ers this season, in addition to two games with the Panthers, so they need to be prepared for it. How much those teams run it remains to be seen, but head coach Mike Smith said he was going to be prepared.

“I know that our coaching staff is going to spend a whole lot of time on it because it could be the wave of the future,” Smith said. “I’m not saying that it will be, but that it could be.

“It’s something that we want to make sure that we have a very good understanding of.”

They picked a good place to study up, as Clemson set school records last year for points (533) and yards (6,665), while setting an ACC record for scoring at least 37 points in 10 straight games.

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9 Responses to “Falcons head to Clemson to learn some read-option”
  1. hartcarluncarlun says: Mar 26, 2013 10:10 AM

    The Falcons are just a well ran franchise from top to bottom. Great owner, great gm and a good coach.

  2. nineroutsider says: Mar 26, 2013 10:15 AM

    As long as they realize that some of the teams running the read-option don’t live and die by it. Kap can light them up for 350+ yards passing too and may not run the ball at all. No NFL team runs the true read-option like Clemson.

  3. classyjacklambert says: Mar 26, 2013 10:28 AM

    Actually Dabo is not a real name. His real name is William Christopher Swinney. His brother just had trouble pronouncing his name so he called him “that boy”, but it eventually became “Dabo” because of the way he said it.

  4. chuckdizzlewhut says: Mar 26, 2013 10:45 AM

    In other news, the Clemson staff initially mistook Falcon’s Head Coach Mike Smith for a Used Car Salesman. His greased up hair mixed with the fake name initially had Clemson staff questioning security protocol. Upon speaking with Arthur Blank, that Cheesedick was allowed on premises.

  5. 49erstim says: Mar 26, 2013 11:34 AM

    The beauty of the read offense as run by the 49ers, ‘Skins , ‘Hawks,etc is that you MUST defend everything as opposed to guys that cannot throw an accurate pass ::cough Tebow cough:: and you’re simply defending a couple of runners.

  6. thesmartestmanever says: Mar 26, 2013 11:40 AM

    okay I’m no coach and I never stay at Holiday Inns but I had a dream last night that I had to defend the read option against that kid up there in Seattle. know what I did? zone blitz every other play. he never knew if my DE was coming or dropping into coverage or staying put forcing him to second guess and ultimately call the wrong plays. now in my dream my front seven consisted of Reggie White, Charles Mann, KGB, Dexter Manley, Lawrence Taylor, Junior Seau and James Harrison but still… it worked..

  7. dallascowboysdishingthereal says: Mar 26, 2013 1:16 PM

    Dabo is an idiot and has nothing to do with their successful offense. That offense is all about their genious O.C. Chad Morris and if he ever leaves, Dabo will be coaching WRs at a technical college in Alabama some where.

    The Falcons are there to pick Chad’s mind.

  8. therealsmiley says: Mar 26, 2013 1:36 PM

    Kyle Shanahan and RGIII made this offense work from Game 1 of the 2012 season. Ask the Saints….no offense Saints fans…it surprised me too. Hail!!

  9. joe2jerry says: Mar 26, 2013 1:40 PM

    How about the fly sweep? Are the Falcons learning a out that? What about a true QB sweep in 21 personel? Can’t speak for mike and Pete, but Jim has a new wrinkle every 6-8 months. It’s what I love about the Niner coaching staff, while others are spending large amounts of time to defend what they did last year, they are innovating and learning about what’s next. You can hate if you like, but its hard to argue with the on the field record.

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