ESPN: 5 Keys to Fixing Falcons Offense

All things related to the Atlanta Falcons, NFL and pro football related.
User avatar
Pudge
Site Admin
Posts: 260
Joined: Sun Jan 12, 2014 10:18 pm
Location: North Carolina
Contact:

ESPN: 5 Keys to Fixing Falcons Offense

Postby Pudge » Wed Nov 18, 2015 12:00 pm

http://espn.go.com/blog/atlanta-falcons ... nsive-woes

Getting Roddy White more touches could help Falcons solve offensive woes
Vaughn McClure, ESPN Staff Writer

The Atlanta Falcons started the season 5-0, averaging 32.4 points per game while converting 14-of-19 in the red zone with five total turnovers. Then they lost three of the next four games, averaging just 16.8 points per game while going 6-of-14 in the red zone and turning the ball over nine times. Here are five ways the Falcons can fix the offense moving forward:

Get Roddy White more touches: It’s no secret the veteran receiver hasn’t been a major part of the offensive game plan with 17 receptions on 29 targets. He’s had three or less targets in four games. He’s been the first read on some three-steps slants, but those opportunities have been very scarce. Offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan obviously views matchups for Devonta Freeman and Jacob Tamme against linebackers and safeties -- and Leonard Hankerson against cornerbacks, when healthy -- as better choices behind unquestioned top target Julio Jones. But as coach Dan Quinn said Monday, White is an important part of what the Falcons are trying to accomplish, so White needs be targeted. At age 34, he’s not the same vertical threat he used to be, but he still has the ability to create separation using his football savvy. He could have been a solid option in clutch situations like those foiled goal-line scenarios against the 49ers and Titans. The competitor in White probably would rather be a spectator on the sideline than be on the field as a non-contributor while the offense struggles, but he’s not about to scream at Shanahan for more looks. Besides, White said his piece when he told ESPN.com he didn’t want to be out there just blocking. As long as White maintains a cool head, he’ll prevail.


Roddy White is an important part of what the Falcons are trying to accomplish and should be thrown to more often. AP Photo/Gerald Herbert

Run more no-huddle: This is easier said than done. Shanahan is no doubt open to the idea and will respect whatever Quinn believes is best for the team, and Quinn said the no-huddle was something he’d consider. At the same time, there are other factors to weigh, such as how the uptempo pace will affect the emphasis on Freeman and a running game that is so crucial to the flow of Shanahan’s offense. That’s not to say the Falcons won’t be able to run out of the no-huddle. They just might run into some bad looks with one-back sets and no fullback or tight end in there for blocking purposes and an inexperienced center in Mike Person trying to make the run-blocking calls. The other factor here is Ryan having more control of the offense, which is something Shanahan has to be willing to accept. Everyone knows the no-huddle has worked effectively for Ryan and the Falcons in the past. If the Falcons use it against the Colts and are successful, then keep doing it. "I feel like, if it comes up, it’s something that we’re going to be prepared for and we’re going to do really well," Ryan said Tuesday during his weekly radio show. But you better believe Shanahan believes in his offense as is, with better execution. By the way, the Falcons are averaging 29.4 seconds per play as opposed to 28.3 seconds the last three seasons, according to ESPN Stats and Information.

Let Matt Ryan be Matt Ryan: This plays into the point above, with the no-huddle taking advantage of Ryan’s strength as an intelligent pocket passer who can get the ball out quickly. But let’s go deeper. Shanahan seems like a reasonable guy, so if Ryan feels uncomfortable running aspects of the offense or is thrown off by all he is asked to with this massive playbook, then maybe things should be scaled back. Publicly, Ryan has said all the right things. But behind closed doors, teammates will tell you he voices his displeasure with emphasis when the offense isn’t operating efficiently. Yes, Ryan has been off through the first nine games with uncharacteristically bad throws and technique flaws, leading to seven interceptions to go along with three lost fumbles. Being more accurate is his emphasis for the remainder of the season. At the same time, Ryan, with more than 30,0000 career passing yards and a career 64.3 percent completion percentage, has earned the right to have a strong voice. If Ryan believes going down the field more often to Jones and others will help get the offense back to where it needs to be, then he should nudge Shanahan. If he thinks the bootlegs are taking him out of his rhythm, he needs to let it be known. He’s had to adjust his game to a new offense, and maybe now the offense needs to adjust to him.

Don't drop the ball: This term can be used literally and figuratively. The receivers have had their share of drops, led by Hankerson with five drops in seven games. Even Jones has had a few drops, although he’s been targeted a team-high 120 times. Those drops take the offense out of rhythm and lead to undesirable third-down situations, and being better on third down was an emphasis during the bye week. The Falcons have lost seven of their 14 fumbles. And they’ve dropped the ball with penalties as well, with 22 offensive holding penalties (two declined) and nine false starts. Those penalties have amounted to 238 total yards and have nullified 93 yards gained while stalling eight drives. "There’s certain penalties that you can kind of live with being aggressive, but there are certain things that are on us," Ryan said. "The procedural stuff, the snaps, those kinds of thing, if we can clean those up -- which have put us behind in some first-and-10 situations where we’ve had to play from behind the sticks and had a couple of turnovers as a result of that in scoring situations -- the outcome's going to be different for us. And that’s got to be a huge point of emphasis for us. And that starts in practice. We’ve got to be on it every day, working our cadence ... being sharp across the board."

Take a long look at the line: This group has been solid for the most part through the season, save for the snapping issues at center with both Person and James Stone. It’s no wonder Person and Stone spent extra time following Monday’s practice working on their snapping. While Gino Gradkowski is known as the best snapper of the group, Person’s run blocking is what has earned him the No. 1 job, so he needs to clean up the other aspect to retain it. And for those fans lobbying for former first-overall pick Jake Long to be inserted into the lineup, he might be gaining ground on right tackle Ryan Schraeder, but Schraeder won’t go down without a fight. Had Long been healthy upon joining the team, there were some internal discussions about Jake Matthews playing guard. That probably had to do with finding a way to get the best five on the field and knowing Matthews is talented and athletic enough to adjust. But it’s a moot point now, and a healthy Matthews has shown the great promise he has as the left tackle for years to come. As for Long, his body coming off those knee surgeries doesn’t move like it used, so he remains as insurance if Schraeder falters.

Cyril
Posts: 10
Joined: Fri Aug 14, 2015 8:16 pm

Re: ESPN: 5 Keys to Fixing Falcons Offense

Postby Cyril » Thu Dec 03, 2015 7:57 pm

That message is reason enough to get new coaches..... I almost wanted Mark Reich, but he's too smart to take this job....
I do believe the players are better than the coaches, and I understand firing them now would be considered quick,
but its like a rookie who everyone has hopes for, after a year If your not shown anything, why wait 5 years to fire them.....

Just getting rid of Shanny would be a good start!! but did most think he was a good cord,?? Look if you think an Offensive Cord.
counts, a new one won't help Roddy now, but it would sure help Ryan IMO.

Davewaz
Posts: 36
Joined: Tue Aug 04, 2015 9:39 pm

Re: ESPN: 5 Keys to Fixing Falcons Offense

Postby Davewaz » Sun Dec 06, 2015 9:58 pm

None of this will matter unless we fire our coordinator, his long history of terrible results has followed him.... Hopefully it won't be too late for Ryan to get himself back together.

AngryJohnny51
Posts: 55
Joined: Mon Jul 20, 2015 8:17 am

Re: ESPN: 5 Keys to Fixing Falcons Offense

Postby AngryJohnny51 » Tue Dec 08, 2015 8:29 am

Ugghh. Shanahan.

AngryJohnny51
Posts: 55
Joined: Mon Jul 20, 2015 8:17 am

Re: ESPN: 5 Keys to Fixing Falcons Offense

Postby AngryJohnny51 » Fri Dec 11, 2015 2:21 pm

Five keys to fixing offense:

1. Fire Shanahan.
2. Relieve Shanahan from his OC duties
3. Buy Shanahan out
4. Demote Shanahan to team jock strap tester
5. Repeat steps 1-4.

User avatar
Pudge
Site Admin
Posts: 260
Joined: Sun Jan 12, 2014 10:18 pm
Location: North Carolina
Contact:

Re: ESPN: 5 Keys to Fixing Falcons Offense

Postby Pudge » Sat Dec 12, 2015 10:29 am

I'm gonna be sooooo happy when Shanahan keeps his job, gets the players his offense needs and Falcon fans are sitting there next year stewing in their own negativity.

Davewaz
Posts: 36
Joined: Tue Aug 04, 2015 9:39 pm

Re: ESPN: 5 Keys to Fixing Falcons Offense

Postby Davewaz » Sun Dec 13, 2015 10:32 am

Are you actually buying into the Shanahan just needs his kind of players crap... Him and his dad have been using the same excuse for 15 years to make up for their consistently below average results. Kyle is not an NFL caliber OC, the quicker we realize this the quicker we have a chance to get better.

AngryJohnny51
Posts: 55
Joined: Mon Jul 20, 2015 8:17 am

Re: ESPN: 5 Keys to Fixing Falcons Offense

Postby AngryJohnny51 » Sun Dec 13, 2015 12:29 pm

Pudge wrote:I'm gonna be sooooo happy when Shanahan keeps his job, gets the players his offense needs and Falcon fans are sitting there next year stewing in their own negativity.



Shanahan wouldn't be in the league if his father wasn't who he is. What has Kyle ever done? Two and out in Houston. Three and out at Washington. One and out at Cleveland. All of the above mentioned weren't exactly offense juggernauts either. All were terrible in the red zone as well. I guess he just didn't have his "type" of players at his other stops either. Smh

User avatar
The Mattural
Posts: 7
Joined: Sun Nov 01, 2015 1:48 am

Re: ESPN: 5 Keys to Fixing Falcons Offense

Postby The Mattural » Mon Dec 14, 2015 1:29 pm

The guy who replaced him in Cleveland (Deflippio) is having way better success with an offense that is only better than our unit up front. We scored 0 points against a team that we know very well. A team the Tennessee Titans scored 10 points on. A team the Luke McCown led Saints hung 22 points in Carolina. Non of those teams have more talent on the offensive side of the ball than we do. I understand that as a HC in the NFL you are going to make mistakes, but don't ride it out cut your losses. You thought the zone game would be good for the our current personnel and you thought Sha-na-na was the one to run it. It hasn't worked out, outside of the first 5 games. Cut your losses DQ fire Sha-na-na. Matt Ryan and Sha-na-na are not a good match unless Sha-na-na sees the error of his ways and goes Todd Haley and adjust what he likes to do to fit the talent that he has on this team.

User avatar
Pudge
Site Admin
Posts: 260
Joined: Sun Jan 12, 2014 10:18 pm
Location: North Carolina
Contact:

Re: ESPN: 5 Keys to Fixing Falcons Offense

Postby Pudge » Tue Dec 15, 2015 8:50 pm

Davewaz wrote:Are you actually buying into the Shanahan just needs his kind of players crap...

I'm buying into the Falcons don't have good talent on the offensive side of the ball. And I'm not going to condemn an offensive coordinator that has a weak offensive line, a backup-caliber tight end and a bunch of backup-caliber wide receivers besides Julio, and a Julio Jones who was basically limping his way through October and since the bye week has been slowed down not by injury but by good corners.

I'm not expecting Shanahan to work miracles, but his offense is predicated off the play-action. Our play-action hasn't been overly effective because Ryan hasn't been particularly good, our running game has been marginalized by slow starts and only having 1 wide receiver that is capable of running a route more than 7 yards and separating from coverage is hindering these things.

AngryJohnny51 wrote:I guess he just didn't have his "type" of players at his other stops either. Smh

Well, he didn't always have reliable quarterback play at his other stops: Matt Schaub, Rex Grossman, John Beck, Donovan McNabb, Robert Griffin III, Kirk Cousins, Brian Hoyer, Johnny Manziel.

Not to mention his WR2 in Houston was Kevin Walter, in Washington: Jabar Gaffney, Josh Morgan, Leonard Hankerson and Miles Austin in Cleveland.

Quinn & Co. need to regroup this offseason, go out and get a good center, get a legit starting caliber WR2, upgrade the TE position and beef up the guard play. If Shanahan can't get significant improvement with that roster, then you can cut the cord in 2017.

The Mattural wrote:The guy who replaced him in Cleveland (Deflippio) is having way better success with an offense that is only better than our unit up front.

"Way better success?" Is that based solely on the fact that they scored 24 points last week and we scored 0? Because they've scored 99 points over the past 7 weeks, and we've scored 96 points in that same span. Is a single field goal "way better?"


I'm just curious, if we fire Shanahan and bring in someone else...if that guys doesn't produce an offense that is more than middling, does he get fired too?

I don't think Shanahan is a great offensive coordinator, but I just don't like setting the precedent where if you don't come in and immediately hit a homerun, you're going to be gone, especially when this team is in the midst of a 3-4 year rebuilding project anyway.


Return to “The Huddle”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Google [Bot] and 2 guests