Falcons head coach Arthur Smith noted this week that his team isn’t out of the playoff race despite having a losing record and it looks like they’ll remain in the mix after Sunday’s game against the Panthers.
Tight end Hayden Hurst caught a three-yard touchdown from Matt Ryan less than a minute into the fourth quarter and the Falcons lead the Panthers 26-14 as a result. Hurst was activated off of injured reserve on Saturday.
The Falcons got possession of the ball when Panthers quarterback Cam Newton tripped over center Pat Elflein‘s foot and fumbled while trying to hand the ball to running back Chuba Hubbard. Defensive tackle Grady Jarrett recovered near midfield and the Falcons used 10 plays to move the ball into the end zone.
The Panthers are also 5-7, but Newton had no interest in talking about the playoffs this week. If the score remains the way it is now, there won’t be any discussion of them in Carolina this week.