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Major Questions Surrounding Falcons In First Quarter Of Season

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NFL

Major Questions After First Quarter Of Season

The Falcons have a bye heading into the second quarter of the season. So far, this team has been solid and still looks to be the best in the NFC. They had two close wins against Chicago and Detroit. They won in dominant fashion against the Green Bay Packers. The game that was the most disappointing was against Buffalo, but injuries hurt them in that game. The team is far from perfect, so it’s only right to point out the negatives. Here are some of the major questions after the first quarter of the season.

Is The Offense Still Scary?

Whenever you have Julio Jones lining up opposite of you, it’s scary. As a whole, is this offense as scary as last year? Steve Sarkisian has had an up and down season so far with his play calling. Sometimes when the Falcons should run, they pass the ball. Devonta Freeman should be in the game during certain situations besides Tevin Coleman. Austin Hooper and Taylor Gabriel are barely being utilized in the offense. Sarkisian has to find a better way to get everybody involved, even when Julio isn’t in the game. Most of the time the receivers are effective because Jones requires so much attention. But as you saw in the game against the Bills, things go wrong when Jones isn’t around. Add that on with Sanu being out, and you have yourself a lackluster offense.

Will The Offensive Line Ever Be Consistent?

The offensive line has not been the best this season. To start the season Wes Schwiezter was having trouble, but he improves every game. Ryan Schraeder has been out due to the concussion protocol, and his backup has not been the best. Jake Matthews has had an up and down season so far. The best players on the line so far are Andy Levitre and Alex Mack. When Schraeder returns, the line should be much better than it has the past two weeks. The more time the core group plays together, the better they should be deep into the season.

Is The Defense As Good As Expected?

This Falcons defense was being hyped up before the season started. With the additions of Dontari Poe and draft pick Takk McKinley, the defense screamed top 5 potential. So far we’ve seen that they can be really good, and sometimes they can be really bad. Buffalo exposed them, and Detroit almost had their way with them. Desmond Trufant still looks shaky at times. The run defense is still having problems against elite running backs. Tight ends seem to be having a field day with the defense at times too. One of the biggest positives from the defense is the pass rush. For years the team has had issues getting to the quarterback, but now it’s a different story. When you have players like Brooks Reed leading the team in sacks, you know something is working right.

Is Matt Ryan Falling Off?

There have been some major questions surrounding Matt Ryan so far. He has not been the best this season. He’s had multiple interceptions in two games, and his accuracy is way off. This inaccuracy could be due to the offensive line struggles because at times he looks uncomfortable. Against Buffalo, he was struggling to hit receivers on point, but he didn’t have his top two targets for most of the game. The Falcons will go as far as Ryan takes them, so he needs to turn it up going into the rest of the season. No, he doesn’t have to be perfect, but he needs to be good enough to lead the team to some wins.

Contender Or Pretender?

These are not major questions surrounding the team as a whole because we know this team is talented. By the looks of it, they’ll be on top of the division again and will be competing in late January. Not many teams can match up with a top-five offense and top 15 defense. Since it is just the beginning of the season, there isn’t much to be worried about yet. If the Falcons continue to be inconsistent, we should definitely start diving in on what’s really going on with the team.