Falcons apparently opening the season in nickel defense

AP

All offseason the Falcons ducked questions about whether their base defense was going to be a 4-3 or a 3-4.

But when they released their first depth chart of the year, there’s still no answer.

The Falcons’ official/unofficial depth chart shows their nickel defense, with just two linebackers (Paul Worrillow and Joplo Bartu) along with five defensive backs.

Josh Wilson, Desmond Trufant and Robert Alford are listed as the starting cornerbacks in this arrangement. And at least when they’re playing the Saints, that’s likely how they’ll line up.

The chart does list four defensive linemen, with Tyson Jackson and Paul Soliai as the tackels and Kroy Biermann and Jonathan Babineaux the ends (with Osi Umenyiora a backup there).

But both Jackson and Soliai are base 3-4 players, and the fact the Falcons went and signed them in the first hours of free agency should tell you which way they’re leaning.

There are no real surprises on the offensive side of the ball, as they decided to leave incumbent Sam Baker at left tackle and use first-rounder Jake Matthews at right tackle.

42 responses to “Falcons apparently opening the season in nickel defense

  1. I thought maybe they’d be opening up in the UFC formation given all the training camp fisticuffs.

  2. Will the Falcons be able to hang with an improved Top 4 Saints offense and Top 4 Saints defense? I highly doubt it!

  3. Why can’t I read a story about the Falcons without multiple smart aleck remarks from Saints fans?

    Oh wait… They’re Saints fans.

  4. What’s it matter if it’s 3-4 or 4-3…the NFL is accustomed to both. There aren’t any surprises. Preseason will give away their scheme.

  5. Tennessee fans were amused at the chemistry between the Falcons and the Titans during yesterday’s scrimmage in Atlanta. I’ve been to Titans’ scrimmages before, and I don’t recall ever seeing our head coach yell at an opposing defender for getting too physical with our QB (a big no-no) or our WR’s coach yelling at Falcons DBs.

    Perhaps there was a little extra mojo in the mix for the “Hard Knocks cameras which were everywhere?”

  6. Be thankful ATL… you could have a 75 year old DC running the Tampa 2 defense like what’s being done in Dallas.
    Not everyone can hold that 32nd ranked defense title!

  7. Very interesting. The Saints’ offense has been practicing against this type of defense for two years now. They (the Falcons) are going to get lit up like a Christmas tree on Sept. 7.

  8. Why can’t I read a story about the Falcons without multiple smart aleck remarks from Saints fans?

    Oh wait… They’re Saints fans.
    ——————————————————

    Could be worse. Seahawks fans feel the need to comment on EVERY team’s articles.

  9. Don’t worry about the Pelicants there won’t be much say when that Atl D flood burn face Brees. You’ll see.

  10. Wonder if the depth chart reflects the number of plays a team runs out of a particular set….as some other folks have pointed out, most teams play more more nickel than their base defense in the the NFL these days.

    Based on the mix-and-match Nolan has shown in the past, this kind of thing does not mean a lot….the acid test will come in the 4th quarter of close games, when the gimmick formations and trick coverages are gone and the team simply needs to hold a lead.

  11. dubbski says:
    Aug 5, 2014 4:36 PM
    Don’t worry about the Pelicants there won’t be much say when that Atl D flood burn face Brees. You’ll see.

    New Orleans leads that series 13-3 since 06. We own you.

  12. Haha go ahead and run your little nickel. Falcons fans are gonna have nightmares about Khiry Robinson for weeks.

  13. tlw109 says:Aug 5, 2014 4:12 PM

    Why can’t I read a story about the Falcons without multiple smart aleck remarks from Saints fans?

    Oh wait… They’re Saints fans.

    Just because the Saints made Gonzales cry @ the end of last season’s 1st game don’t blame the Saints’ fans. Wait…GO RIGHT AHEAD!! LOL

  14. dubbski says:Aug 5, 2014 4:36 PM

    Don’t worry about the Pelicants there won’t be much say when that Atl D flood burn face Brees. You’ll see.

    #1. Wrong sport. Pelicans are basketball. #2. What’s flood burn face? ATL fans…Rise up…your I.Q. that is.

  15. yippiekyyaymf says:Aug 5, 2014 4:38 PM

    Dosent matter until the clock hits zero aints fans I hope you bring your bags you gonna need them …ALL RED IN THIS DOME

    It was all red last year…until the ATL fans left early because of that butt whipping in the your dome. lol

  16. It’s funny how people think ATL is going to be bad this year but what they fail to realize is that ATL is healthy this year and a lot bigger and stronger on defense and offense. Good luck stopping Julio and Roddy this year.

  17. Saints fans…y’all are 13-3 vs ATL last 8 years. This cuts ATL’s overall advantage to 47-43….so your dominance recently has only made the rivalry even, being it was 44-30 ATL before Payton/Brees saved the city from relocation. Thanks for finally showing up guys.

  18. Because for the saint fans, football didn’t exist before 2006.

    That’s why they love to say “13 – 3”. Because it’s embarrassing to mention that, even with their recent success, they still don’t lead the head to head.

  19. I live in Mass and been a Saints fan since I’ve been 11 years old so don’t play that ” where were the Saints fans before 2006 stuff ” ? We own ATL, we made Vick flip off his own fans, we made Tony G. cry, we made Bobby Petrino quit, we have a SB ring, and we have fans that fill up that Dome every Sunday. That’s more than what you ham and egger Falcons fans can say……

  20. In my best Jeff Foxworthy voice….

    If you say you’re a Saints fan you’re whole life, but you don’t have a paper bag with Saints colors/logos painted on it in your closet somewhere…..

    YOU MIGHT BE A SAINTS BANDWAGON FAN.

  21. Let me be more specific for all of you low IQ Falcons fans, I’ve liked the Saints since I was 11. The year was 1991. I am 34 years old. There’s no bandwagon jumping over here “Falcants” fans. I guarantee I have forgotten more about the Saints history than most of you phony ATL fans will ever know about the mediocre Falcons football team. Get ready to get swept yet again by New Orleans……

  22. destinationfl says:
    Aug 5, 2014 6:42 PM
    sb44champs – last years rankings have no bearing on the upcoming season.
    —————————————-
    Oh how convenient… Failcons will lose Week 1 in ATL

  23. destinationfl says:
    Aug 5, 2014 6:42 PM
    sb44champs – last years rankings have no bearing on the upcoming season.
    =============================
    It’s very convenient for you to forget about last years Saints ranking number 4 in both offense and defense which has been vastly improved in the offseason which you will see on display Week 1 in ATL

  24. burtmurphy1 says:Aug 5, 2014 8:44 PM

    Because for the saint fans, football didn’t exist before 2006.

    That’s why they love to say “13 – 3″. Because it’s embarrassing to mention that, even with their recent success, they still don’t lead the head to head.

    Like the Falcons have ALWAYS been a GOOD team?!!! LOL @ least we don’t leave our team during HALFTIME if they are behind. LOL

  25. steviaquinn says:Aug 5, 2014 8:19 PM

    What’s with all the Saint trolls? You couldnt find one Saint fan 5 years ago ( without a paper bag over their face)

    You also couldn’t find 1 Falcon fan w/o bird crap on their faces. Oh my bad. That was LAST SEASON TOO!!!!!!!!! Rise up now. LOL

  26. wwttww says:Aug 5, 2014 6:37 PM

    Saints fans…y’all are 13-3 vs ATL last 8 years. This cuts ATL’s overall advantage to 47-43….so your dominance recently has only made the rivalry even, being it was 44-30 ATL before Payton/Brees saved the city from relocation. Thanks for finally showing up guys.

    8 years is a long time. lol Maybe your team can now start showing up…& make sure the fans stay the whole PLEASE. lol

  27. I find it funny that these delusional Falcons fans really think their team is on our level. Your squad hasn’t been even in the same stratosphere as New Orleans for almost a decade. Oh yeah, y’all had a better year than us in 2012 and won the division by default cause half our organization was suspended. But remember who gave you your first loss of that season.

  28. we change from a 4-3 to a 3-4 and then so did the Failclowns. We play in a nickle most of the season and now so are the Failclowns. Difference is our nickle was with safeties and your will be corners. You know you are good when your little red headed step brother wants to emulate you. rise up and look at the rest of the division.

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