It’s do or die for the Atlanta Falcons. If they don’t beat the Carolina Panthers, they can kiss their NFL playoff hopes good-bye. Kickoff is at 4:25 PM ET so don’t miss it!
It’s amazing the changes that can happen in a single season. The Atlanta Falcons have gone from competing (and losing) the Super Bowl to the verge of missing the playoffs entirely! Matt Ryan, 32, needs to lead the Dirty Birds to one more win in order to secure one of the last spots in the 2017-18 postseason. The problem? They have to face the surging Carolina Panthers. Will “Matty Ice” wake his dormant offense, or will the Panthers make a quick snack out of the Falcons?
The Panthers have already secured a spot in the playoffs – so have the New England Patriots, the Pittsburgh Steelers, the Philadelphia Eagles, the Minnesota Vikings, Jacksonville Jaguars, Kansas City Chiefs, Los Angeles Rams, and New Orleans Saints. Speaking of the Saints, the New Orleans squad is probably why the Panthers won’t roll over and purr for the Falcons. Though Carolina has clinched a spot, a win over Atlanta (and a Saints loss against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers) would give the Panthers the NFC South title. It would also give them a first-round bye. While that scenario seems like a long shot, it’s at least a shot, so the Panthers will be at their best for this match.
Atlanta was once considered an offensive juggernaut in the 2016 season (thought, a juggernaut that happened to run out of gas in the second half of Super Bowl 51. Ouch.) They’re currently 15th in points per game, a year when they lead the league in PPG. Matt has also thrown more interceptions (four) than touchdowns (three) in the past four games, per CBS Sports, and their red-zone offense has “completely tanked.” Julio Jones, 28, hasn’t caught a touchdown during the past four-game slump, and they’re about to take this limping offense against a defense that’s seventh in yards allowed and third in sacks.
“We’ve put ourselves into a position where we have an opportunity to play our way in.” Matt said ahead of this game, per The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. At the beginning of the year, that what you always want is to be in the mix. We are excited about that. You know, it doesn’t matter. We have to win one game. We’ve got to worry about the opponent that we are going against and have the best week of preparation that we can. Not trying to do anything out of the ordinary. Just do what we do, the best that we can do it. That’s usually the best recipe for success.” Hopefully, the Falcons are ready for the Panthers, or this game will mark the end of their season.
Do you think the Atlanta Falcons will make the playoffs, HollywoodLifers?