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Falcons Week 1 Comes Down To The Wire

Falcons Week 1 Runa Pabna via Flickr.com

NFL

Falcons Week 1 Recap: Big Win Still Poses Big Questions

The Falcons came out of the first week with a close win against the Chicago Bears. Not everything went right for the Falcons, but not much went wrong either. Chicago came out gunning for the defending NFC champs, and the Falcons felt that energy all game. The offense still looks good and the defense had some good plays as well. There’s a lot to take from this game, but here are my top 3 takeaways from the Falcons Week 1 game.

Offensive Line Needs Some Help

This isn’t to say that the entire line played horribly because they didn’t. But right guard Wes Schweitzer had a lot of problems today and it threw the offense off. Every time there was a run to the right, the play didn’t gain many yards. Remember, Schweitzer won the right guard spot over Ben Garland in the preseason. There were also a couple of holding calls on Jake Matthews and Andy Levitre. There were numerous sacks on Matt Ryan, and that may be on the entire line in general. As the weeks go by, things should get better for the line but if they face the same problems, it should be addressed.

Hooper Was Hooping!

Austin Hooper was poised to be the breakout player for the Falcons this year, and he sure did that against the Bears. He was quiet in the first half, but when the team needed him most, he showed up. In a crucial possession where the Falcons needed the score, Hooper was open for an 88-yard touchdown. In the next series, Hooper had another big reception for Atlanta. This should be a recurring thing for the Falcons this season. It looks like Hooper is going to be a reliable target for Ryan on 3rd down situations. Can you say Tony Gonzalez 2.0?

The Defense Had Many Ups . . . And Some Crucial Downs

There’s no question that this defense is terrifying from the Falcons Week 1 game. We had a lot of big hits, stops behind the LOS, and some crucial sacks. The biggest sack of the game came from Brook Reeds on the last play. Although the pass defense was great during parts of the game, in the 4th quarter it began to slow down. The biggest problems came from the run defense at times. Chicago had too many big runs, which is the main reason they were able to stay in the game. Atlanta has to do a better job of setting the edge and finishing their tackles. They also had two chances to lose the game at the end. This was just because they didn’t identify the backs coming out of the backfield. They’ll learn from this as they play more games.

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