Friday, September 5, 2008

Conference Call, Falcon Thoughts

There are some good quotes in today's press conference transcript on Hondo's Blog from Rod Marinelli, Falcons Head Coach, and Matt Ryan.

Some points that caught my attention:

Matt Ryan has no idea what's about to hit him, multiple times, in multiple ways, on Sunday. My favorite part was where Rod talked about physical pressure being obvious, but that he loved mental pressure just as much. To a defense making a QB think they are about to be hit is just as good as almost hitting him. How often do we see a QB dumping it off or throwing an ill advised pass when there's no one near him. Rookie's starting their first game are most susceptible to this.

I laughed out loud to the answers Rod had to some of those questions. Example:

On Falcons Head Coach Mike Smith’s guess that the Lions will run many blitzes to get to Ryan: “We’re just going to do what we do; no change; same shorts, same shirts, same socks.”

Translation: Would you also like a copy of the game plan?

Good read, and a lot to glean.

In regards to the Falcons as well, there are serious concerns about two aspects of the team, outside of a rookie QB: O-Line and DB's They had poor passing D against very mediocre passing in the preseason, and it is apparent the coaching staff is already trying to set up for the press conference after they lose by talking about how hard it will be for any team to defend Roy and CJ. We'll see.

While Turner is billed as the center of the Falcons offense, look for a lot of run blitzing and loaded boxes to stop Turner and force the Falcons to win through the Air -- and with the revamped Lions Secondary, that is a match up I like.

I also look for the Lions Dline to do very well against an inexperienced Atlanta Oline and QB. If they have trouble pressuring Ryan, it will not portend well for the rest of the season. On the other hand, anything short of a truly dominating (double-digit sack game) should not set off cries of best Dline in the league. They should get pressure on Ryan without blitzing all the time, and force him into mistakes. But if the dominate, then we have a guess they will at least be able get good pressure on average lines, and hold their own against the better lines.

My fear is that after 4-0 preseason, and all that is going against Atlanta that the players are overconfident and look ahead. Not likely considering the grit they have shown so far, but it is a possibility and cannot be discounted.

Looking forward to Sunday. Go Lions!!


Isphet said...

Poor Matt Ryan; he's going to have one difficult year. You have to think he'll be sacked at least as much as Kitna was last year; I'm calling 70 sacks this year if he survives all 17 weeks. I just see no way that the Falcons' offense scores more than 10 points against us. Not because I think the Lions are that good, but because the Falcons are just going to be that bad.

Our run game will struggle in the first half, but we'll score early with the pass then slow the game down with a slightly more effective running game in the second half. I don't expect a lot of scoring in the second half of this game.

Lions score 17 in the first half, and 10 in the second. Falcons score a meaningless TD towards the end of the game after they've gotten their feet wet.

27-7 Lions.

Anonymous said...

Good analysis DetFan. Michael Turner is definitely the wild card in this game and the only real difference maker on the Falcon's side of the ball. I agree that we'll probably be focusing on run blitzing, but what I really want to see is how the D-line plugs up holes in the running game without blitzing LB's to help them. This is going to be much more important, in my mind at least, than how well they get to the QB. Ryan's going to make mistakes...whether we get in the backfield or not. But Turner has the capability to make the Lions pay if they make a mistake.

While the falcon's O-line will make it difficult to really analyze our D-line, I think that, more than anything, this will give us a chance to see how our D-line is going to perform against the run this season. Given our division, *Ahem* *Adrian Peterson*, our defense's ability to stop the run, especially without a lot of help from the secondary or a flood of LB's will ultimately prove how well or ill-equipped we are to take that #2 spot in the division.


CHIEFGER139 said...

must road win
will show us if were better than the weak teams-see a win something like the kansas city game last year as we are no longer at the bottom of the league-even at this early part of the season and all our new starters were as good as last years team and will get better later in the year-kitna stay healthy-1st win in a double digit win season for us-see rod being considered as coach of the year as he takes us to the playoffs-even see oralasky moping up the last 5 minutes of the game
lions 27-13

JJLions20 said...

I watched the Colts play the Falcons in Preseason and Turner ripped them apart. He had two huge runs totaling more than 100 yards in those two runs. Both times the Colts defense over pursued and Turner cutback and there was a huge open field. That is the problem with the Cover-2. One linebacker over pursuing and getting out of his gap causes a big opening and a big play. It's important for the Lion Linebackers to play their gaps and prevent the cutback.

Make the Falcon go on 13 play drives without making a mistake. Make Ryan put the ball in the air.