- NFC Divisional Round Preview – The Knockout - January 20, 2022
- NFC Wild Card Preview – Wicked Winds - January 13, 2022
- NFL Power Rankings Playoff Edition – The Course Of The Contenders - January 12, 2022
The ultimate game has arrived as Superbowl 51 is upon us . The Atlanta Falcons have led the regular season in scoring and now the playoffs as well. The New England Patriots have the No. 1 scoring defense and have made it look easy. One more game left to flex their respective muscles.
Keys to the Game:
On offense, the Falcons will need to trust themselves. No team this year has really handled them outside one or two instances. They need to make sure their drives end with touchdowns instead of field goals.
On defense Atlanta will need to end drives on third down. They can’t give up cheap first downs with Tom Brady improvising and getting three or four yards to convert. Stay away from gambling on pass plays and just cover. Gang tackle and make them hard hits. Getting a pass rush on Brady is a must. Keep him dancing around the pocket and get hits on him whenever they can even if it’s a second late . (It’s one game left, what are you gonna get suspended next week?)
Offensively, the Patriots need to let it fly. Attack Atlanta’s young secondary and put pressure on its linebackers. Although they haven’t had a pile of turnovers, the Patriots will need to keep the ball in their possession and keep Atlanta away from short field situations.
Defensively, the Patriots need to generate a pass rush with the least amount of rushers possible. Getting to the quarterback with three or four players will help keep linebackers in coverage situations. In the secondary, it’s a must they play as aggressive as possible and tackle with conviction after every catch (again your not getting suspended on vacation).
The X factor for the Falcons is Muhammad Sanu. The big play wide receiver on the other side. Number 12 might not be number 11 (Julio Jones) but his play can change the balance of this game. If he makes those big catches for first downs and touchdowns, the so called “take away their best player plan” will be thrown out the window.
The X factor for the Patriots is Dion Lewis. We’ve watched this running back score every way possible. He will need to make a difference on special teams and definitely on third down as Brady will look for those little outlets to keep drives alive (shades of Kevin Faulk). His ability to turn small plays into big gains will help neutralize a Falcons’ pass rush that will no doubtly be thinking sack all game.
Prediction: No reason to think any of these teams are scared or overwhelmed in this game. The Dynasty is ready! Rise up Nation is ready! At this point we are all ready for this game to happen, have fun folks! Falcons Win 34 – 27