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Week 13: Third Down Proves To Be Crucial Point In Falcons Loss

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NFL

Third Down Proves To Be Crucial Point In Falcons Loss

In a matchup against one of the NFC’s best, the Falcons had a lot to account for. For one, they were playing without their best cornerback, Desmond Trufant. They were also playing against a top-five defense, which isn’t easy for any offense. The Falcons had been on fire as of late, but the Vikings were on a seven-game winning streak. One thing that would show importance in this game was third down conversions. The Falcons had one of the best third down percentages coming in, and the Vikings are one of the best defending them. Atlanta ended the game one for ten on third down conversions, which was a crucial point in the explanation of their loss.

Offense Sputters

With not converting on third down, the Falcons offense did not have a good game. Julio Jones dropped a pass at the beginning of the game that could’ve set the team up big. Minnesota was able to hold him in check for the most of the game with Xavier Rhodes guarding him. Mohamed Sanu also had a dropped pass in a third-down situation. The team had many penalties that set them back throughout the game as well. The Vikings did not allow the Falcons to get in the end zone at all, which is a testament to their great defense.

Defense Loses Juice In Second Half

With the Falcons missing some players on defense, it was going to be a challenge. In the first half, it looked like they were up for that challenge. They only allowed the Vikings to score seven points and got consistent pressure on Case Keenum. Late in the second half, the defense began to lose a lot of energy. That loss of energy was mostly due to the offense getting off the field quick, and the defense had no time to rest. You can also say it has to do with the absence of Trufant and Poole. Keenum torched the secondary in a crucial point of the game, and a pass to Thielen sealed their victory.

Controlling Their Destiny?

Even though the Falcons lost, they still have a good chance of making the playoffs. Their last four games are divisional matchups, which leaves their chances all up to them. If they can beat New Orleans on Thursday, they can be right back in the playoff mix and also have a chance to win the division. If they lose, a lot is going to have to happen for them to have a chance. As of now, the Falcons still control their destiny heading into a crucial point in the season.


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