Atlanta’s offense in midseason (not postseason) form

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The wheels fell off for the Chiefs in the second half.

But the Falcons kept rolling.

Matt Cassel had the Chiefs in game at halftime, but a pair of second-half interceptions allowed Atlanta to storm to a 40-24 win in the first game to go final Sunday.

There were only two punts the entire game, one for each side.

But the biggest takeaway from this one is how smooth the Falcons looked on offense, in new coordinator Dirk Koetter’s first game calling plays.

Granted, the Chiefs were short-handed because of injuries and a suspension to Tamba Hali, but you can’t attribute the Falcons’ work to anyone else.

Matt Ryan was a clean 23-of-31 for 299 yards and three touchdowns, spreading it to six different receivers. Julio Jones had 108 yards and two scores, and tight end Tony Gonzalez added a score.

Ryan had grown comfortable with Mike Mularkey as his coordinator, the only one he’s had as a pro, but he also hadn’t won a playoff game. Whether Koetter’s able to change that remains to be seen, but for the moment, they were spreading the ball around beautifully.

The Falcons also committed just two penalties, and didn’t turn it over. They also did it without a huge day from Michael Turner (11 carries for 32 yards), but they didn’t need to run.

Because of their lack of playoff success, they’ve been undervalued this offseason, but they proved Sunday they’ll be able to score with anyone.

13 responses to “Atlanta’s offense in midseason (not postseason) form

  1. The Falcons weakness on defense last year was allowing the opponent to convert on 3rd down (both short & long) and that same thing happened numerous times today. New coordinator, same old spit and it’s been happening when the secondary goes into zone coverage. Also Matt Cassel even though sacked a few times had some nice times to wait it out with not a lot of pressure up the middle from the ATL D-line especially that 1st half. Still a lot to work on. Cut it out Gantt

  2. Thanks Darin for the cheap shot in the title….. We are very excited about this team locally in Atlanta. I suggest the rest of the country take notice. We will make a real push in the playoffs this year. I think we will, I hope we will. Ok maybe not but we won today. Lol

  3. Hah! And they say the chiefs are favorite to win the division. This is the story of their season, starting off good, not finishing well. The game is 60 minutes, not 30, Guess the broncos have to show them how its done next week.

  4. The defense on this team has been vastly overrated. Poe and Dorsey were complete non factors. Atlanta had so much success throwing the ball why run

    Here a direct quote from Stanford Routt. “Stanford Routt—– another defensive back — went a step further and said that when the Chiefs were down 20-17 at halftime “obviously we were doing just fine.”

    That’s exactly the one of the big reasons (other than he is not that good) why he was run out of Oakland. 20 points given up in a half is good? Come on, man. Thank God you’re no longer in Oakland.

    I had this team fighting with Oakland for the division crown. I was wrong. This team will be lucky to win 6 games.

  5. villa, you had the Faiders fighting to win the AFC West, there goes your opinion. Chiefs and Bronco’s were split, and some votes for SD.

    Chiefs were without 3 starters on defense, none of which play a big role in the running game. The way the donks played tonight, it looks like theirs to lose.

    But I do agree about Routt, he’s a #2 at best and 20 points at half is too much. Chiefs won the offensive stats though, except for points of course, and were only forced to punt once.

    Get a healthy defense, hopefully soon, and I think they can still play for a playoff spot.

  6. How about Matt Cassel running around like an idiot early in the game, only to completely fall apart later.

    Better yet, Gonzo dominating the Chiefs in Camerohead Stadium.

    Great stuff. 🙂

  7. jbaxt says: Sep 10, 2012 12:40 AM

    But I do agree about Routt, he’s a #2 at best and 20 points at half is too much. Chiefs won the offensive stats though, except for points of course, and were only forced to punt once.
    Cassel had three turnovers. That tends to keep the punter on the bench. Manning did look good last night, but Denver’s defense couldn’t got off the field on third down. It’s way too early to get too excited or too discouraged.

  8. The “wheels fell off” because of Matt Cassel’s fumble and two interceptions. I noticed they didn’t mention that in the article. When you lose the turnover battle, you normally lose the game. Especailly against an offense like the Falcons.

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