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PostPosted: Thu May 25, 2006 12:22 pm 
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Well first off, we should point out that since Vick came into the league he blistered the kitties just about every time, except last yr. Since then, they've tried to build their D in the mold of having enough speed/playmakers to slow down uber Vick. Obviously they've got a good front office with the way their D's consistently played and upgraded over time. Then the coaching backs up with their consistency on the play side.

Coaching - I'd agree, edge to Car, but simply for consistency. I don't think theres any edge over the long haul (ie. they've got a bill belicheck mastermind on their staff). If anything we've got the biggest "name" in Gibbs. However, obviously Mora's gotta prove two years ago wasn't a fluke.

Passing - I'd agree with Car here too. However, with Vick/Roddy/Jenk/Crump, I def like our upside better. Seattle gave everyone the blueprint for stopping Smith, and I'm not as sold on the aging/underacheiving Johnson as everyone else seems to be. Vick's already doing what he needs to do to get better rapport with the WR's. Plus we've all be told 100x that the WCO, or our version, takes years to learn, let alone master. If he can really figure out when to run, when to pass, then theres no greater pressure you can put on a D. If he figures it out, then I don't see how we can't get to a SB soon.

Runstopping - Obviously not us after last year, but look at the D improvements. I like our playmakers and future better than theres.

Passtopping - see runstopping

SpecTeams - We dipped last year, when we were all world the year before. I can't imagine DeCam would let this go unchecked again this yr. What I'd love to see is DeLo on punt returns, cause he would be about as dangerous back there as it gets, but I don't think the staff this it's worth the risk. I'd expect this to be more like two years ago now, instead of last year.

Only stmt I thought was crazy was this one...
Chris Gamble is not that far off behind DeAngelo Hall in terms of ability. IN fact, Gambel may in fact be more athletic than Hall is if that's at all humanly possible.


To sum it up, I see your point Pudge. Carolina's been the more consistent/proven commodity to this point. However, I just don't see why we wouldn't be able to match up or beat them this yr, or in the future. Even if they are ahead on some of those categories, it's not like we're not close, or have the potential to be better. So instead of worrying, I chose to be optomistic that the moves we've made can help us move past them.


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PostPosted: Thu May 25, 2006 12:46 pm 
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The funny thing is Pudge made some VERY good points, however to me matchups don't always win the games, the intangibles do. I have said before that the one thing that scares me going into this season , playing in our division, is our FG kicker. It could determine if we go to the playoffs or not, and so far it has been neglected. This will come back to haunt us, if we don't either resign Peterson or bring in a veteran.


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PostPosted: Thu May 25, 2006 8:04 pm 
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I'm not syaing the Falcons are incapable of beating the Panthers, I'm just saying that the Panthers are the better team, and their A game is better than our A game. I also think it's interesting that if you discount the 2002 season, in 2003 and 2004 when the Falcons beat the Panthers it usually wasn't a beat down (2 of 3 wins were overtime wins), at least not like we received from them last year, which IMO reiterates my point that the Falcons are not a more talented or better team than the Panthers, just managed to play better on those particular days.

The problem is the Falcons are just too inconsistent to be ready to go to the Super Bowl. You look at the NFC reps in the big game the past year: Philly and Seattle. From start to finish in both 2004 and 2005, the Eagles and then the Seahawks were the most consistent team from Week 1 to Week 17. And they continued that into the playoffs. What has been the case with Vick is that he always gets the team off to a fast start, but usually around 10-12 weeks into the season he starts to slide.

And when it comes to predicting which team will win the game, give me a Panthers team that usually is playing its best in December and usually is much more consistent on a week-to-week basis.

BUt truthfully, at this point I kinda expect the Falcons to win the season opener. Mostly because I think a lot of their newer players (like DeAngelo and Keyshawn) won't have gelled quite as much. Beating them later in the year will be a much more difficult task. Looking over the schedule, a 6-2 start for this team would not surpise me. That indicates they are playing to their expected level. But can they hold that down the stretch, particularly with half of our final 6 games being against division opponents and the other 3 going against NFC East foes that are all capable of winning their division this year.

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PostPosted: Fri May 26, 2006 11:09 am 
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Think about it from this angle... We went to the NFC Championship game 2 years ago, and to me the team is a lot more talented now, than it was then. So why would we not be ready to go to the SB now?? If theres one constant in pro fb now, its parity. For all we know the Cardinals could get hot and go. Thats why they play the games...


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PostPosted: Fri May 26, 2006 9:18 pm 
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But remember who the Falcons had to go through to get that far in 2004? The NFC is definitely much stronger than it was 2 years ago. Remember, we beat a Rams team that probably should have only been 6-10 in the playoffs, a team that only made the playoffs because they played the Eagles & Jets the final weeks of the season that were already in the playoffs, and thus didn't play that hard.

With 4 teams in the NFC East that are all probably capable of winning 10 games this year, not to mention the Bears, Panthers, Bucs, and Seahawks on that same level, it's not going to be such an easy job.

You're right that this team is better, but it was obvious from that game 2 years ago that the Falcons weren't ready to go to the Super Bowl, because when they played the Eagles, the Eagles basically controlled that game from start to finish.

This team is capable, but I'd be much more willing to predict the Falcons going to the Super Bowl in 2007. I think they need to build off something. There's really not much to build off from 2005, but if we have a good year this year, we can build off that in 2007.

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