Recapping the End of Atlanta’s Season

I waited a little while to write a recap for this game. I needed to let some of the frustration/disappointment within me subside, and I wanted to gather everyone’s perspective on the Falcons’ loss, game plan and future endeavors. After taking everything in, it’s hard to believe Atlanta’s season came to an end in one of the worst playoff performances by any team, ever.

When you fail to score any points on offense in four quarters, something is clearly awry. Look at what this team has to work with. Matt Ryan, Michael Turner, Roddy White, Tony Gonzalez and Julio Jones. Those are pretty big names in the NFL, and any coach would absolutely love to have this type of firepower.

Mike Mularkey has been targeted as the main issue for the Falcons’ subpar performance. His conservative play calling has been atrocious at times this season, and Sunday was the pinnacle of poor game plans. Many fans and critics are calling for Mularkey’s exit right now. We may not have to wait to long to see their hopes pan out. He has an interview for the head coaching position in Jacksonville, and if the Jaguars actually want him at the helm, then by all means take him.

Brian VanGorder has now taken the defensive coordinator position at Auburn, leaving the Falcons with one more coaching spot to worry about. BVG’s defense looked much better in the final game of the season, as they came out firing on all cylinders against the Giants. They eventually wore down, but what can you expect from a defense that is constantly on the field, receiving no help whatsoever from the offense?

Michael Turner still has some time left on his contract, but he is looking much older as of late. Maybe the weekly grind of the season wears him down, but The Burner just didn’t look himself in this game.

There are so many issues that need to be addressed, I won’t go into every single one right now. We’ll save that for more posts down the road. For now, all we know is that Mike Smith and Matt Ryan haven’t been able to win a playoff game, a burden that is becoming¬†increasingly¬†heavy on their worried shoulders. Ryan looked uneasy throughout the game, and although he has had one of his best statistical years yet, he still needs to come through in the postseason.

You can’t pin the entire offensive blunder on Matty Ice. He hasn’t had adequate blocking for a long time now, and with the play calling we saw on Sunday, you couldn’t expect many people to succeed in that situation.

Overall, it was another winning season, which is nice to see from a franchise that has endured so much adversity in the past. BUT, simply making it to the playoffs is no longer acceptable in this town. The fans want more, and I certainly hope every player does as well. Arthur Blank and Thomas Dimitroff can’t be happy settling for a mere postseason berth.

We will have to see who Atlanta decides to retain this offseason. Stay tuned right here for future signing news, free agency acquisitions and draft predictions. It’s been a fun year, but that was certainly an abysmal end to it all.


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