After earning just their second Super Bowl appearance in franchise history, Atlanta Falcons owner Arthur Blank is vowing that his team won’t just be a flash in the pan.
Following a presentation at the Atlanta Sports Awards Thursday night where Blank was given a Lifetime Achievement Award by the Atlanta Sports Council, Blank said he believes his team is positioned to be good for the long haul.
“I think the most important thing about last year was it was a great honor playing in the Super Bowl. It was great honor having the wonderful season that we did for our franchise but to me what I take away for me personally the greatest honor from last year is that I feel now that we have what I’ve envisioned for many years is to be a sustainably winning organization,” Blank said, via D. Orlando Ledbetter of the Atlanta Journal Constitution.
“I love our head coach. I love our general manager. I love our coaches, coordinators and whole personnel department. I love a lot of the talent that we have, all the talent that we have. … I think we’re in a great position. I look forward to this year and many years to come. It’s not about a one-trick pony or one-year wonder. It’s about creating a sustainably winning organization. And we’ve done that.”
The Falcons had a sustained run of success under previous head coach Mike Smith. The Falcons reached the playoffs four times in five years with an NFC Championship game appearance in 2012. But after two down seasons with Smith at the helm, the Falcons changed course and installed Dan Quinn as head coach. After a year of growing pains, the Falcons exploded offensively and had every chance to win their first Lombardi Trophy in February.
Sustaining success is a difficult endeavor, particularly in the NFC South where there is a new division winner just about every season. It will be a challenge for the Falcons to put the collapse of Super Bowl LI behind them, but Blank believes they’re built for the task.