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Moneyball Update – Week 14

This was another hard game to watch, because the Falcons had opportunities to win this game, but just didn’t make those plays when they needed to. A poor throw here, blown coverage there, dropped pass here, questionable play call there and this game could have been won.

Chris Redman had a solid game and continued to show that the key difference between the offense under Redman vs. the offense under Ryan is that Redman is much more willing to challenge downfield than Ryan. Now that can get him into trouble at times as he did force a throw downfield into double coverage to Roddy White that resulted in the game-clinching interception by Jonathan Vilma. But it also means that the Falcons can at times make up for it with explosive plays in the passing game. Jason Snelling had a nice game, and Jerious Norwood had some nice runs I couldn’t help but notice especially early in the game that the offense seemed to stall when Norwood was given the ball. When a drive would start with Snelling toting the rock, the offense would move the ball, and then the Falcons would get into the Saints redzone, Norwood would get a carry and then a few plays later we were kicking field goals. Jenkins had an up and down game, dropping a wide open deep pass that would have been a touchdown. It was slightly overthrown, but he could have caught it. But he did catch another deep pass, and seemed to do very well against Darren Sharper in man coverage all day. Jason Snelling made some nice plays in the passing game, and Tony Gonzalez and Roddy White each had their moments as well. The blocking was solid as they were able to create some holes in the ground game, and Redman saw very little heat. Got to give credit to Sam Baker, who gave up 3 pressures in the previous Saints game, but not one in this one despite not being 100%. Also Justin Blalock effectively was able to pick up some of the slack in the ground attack and made some key blocks with Dahl out with injury.

PLAYERPASSRUSHRECBLOCKSPECPENTOTAL
Jason Snelling$0$8$6$0$0$0$14.00
Chris Redman$10$0$0$1$0$0$11.00
Jerious Norwood$0$5$0$0$0$0$5.00
Michael Jenkins$0$0$5$0$0$0$5.00
Justin Blalock$0$0$0$4$0$0$4.00
Tony Gonzalez$0$0$3$0$0$0$3.00
Roddy White$0$0$3$0$0$0$3.00
Eric Weems$0$2$0$0$1$0$3.00
Ovie Mughelli$0$0$1$0$0$0$2.00
Sam Baker$0$0$0$2$0$0$2.00
Tyson Clabo$0$0$0$2$0$0$2.00
Quinn Ojinnaka$0$0$0$2$0-$1$1.00
Todd McClure$0$0$0$1$0$0$1.00
Brian Finneran$0$0$0$0$0$0$0.00

The Falcons defense struggled early in this game making stops on third downs. And the Saints were able to make long drives and score touchdowns. The Saints converted 7 of their first 8 third down attempts. But they picked up their play in the latter half of the third quarter, making some stops to allow the offense to get back into the game. This game also showcased just how good a QB that Drew Brees is. The Falcons got some pressure on Brees during the early portion of the game, but he was able to elude it at times and make the throw despite taking the hit or having a guy in his face. Coverage was iffy, although I do think other than one big play given up, Chris Owens had a solid game in the secondary. Brees seemed to pick on Grimes a lot in this game, although I wouldn’t say he was a problem. He had a INT negated by a question P.I. call. I don’t agree with the call, but I understand why the ref made the call. It probably should have been illegal contact, and not a P.I., but it doesn’t matter. Peterson got beat twice for touchdowns, once again showing that he is questionable in coverage, but had a pretty decent day vs. the run. Abraham had a nice game, and probably had a few pressures negated because of the quality of Brees and lack of strong coverage in the secondary.

It was also nice to see competence in the kicking game for the first time all year.

PLAYERDEFSPECPENTOTAL
John Abraham$3$0$0$3.00
Matt Bryant$0$3$0$3.00
Chauncey Davis$2$0$0$2.00
Chevis Jackson$2$0$0$2.00
Michael Koenen$0$2$0$2.00
Jamaal Anderson$1$0$0$1.00
Kroy Biermann$1$0$0$1.00
Spencer Adkins$0$1$0$1.00
Jonathan Babineaux$1$0-$1$0.00
Curtis Lofton-$0.5$0$0-$0.50
Stephen Nicholas-$0.5$0$0-$0.50
Lawrence Sidbury-$0.5$0$0-$0.50
Thomas DeCoud$0$0-$1-$1.00
Erik Coleman-$1$0$0-$1.00
Chris Owens-$1$0$0-$1.00
Brent Grimes$0$0-$3-$3.00
Mike Peterson-$4.5$0$0-$4.50

Advanced Stats from Week 14:

Dropped Passes (2): Finneran, Jenkins
Sacks Allowed (0)
Poor Throws (4): Redman
QB Pressures Allowed (1): Gonzalez
Missed Blocks (2): McClure, Clabo
QB Pressures (3): Babineaux (2), Abraham
Missed Tackles (4): Abraham (1), Babineaux (1), DeCoud (1), Peterson (0.5), Lofton (0.5)

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Author: Aaron Freeman

Aaron is the founder of FalcFans.com.

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