The trend of way-too-early lists continued after the NFL Draft. Matt Miller of Bleacher Report put together a first-round mock for 2018.

In it Miller has half a dozen teams drafting later than Atlanta. Including the Seahawks, Packers and Cowboys. Which is to say he is guessing the Falcons lose in the divisional round of the playoffs.

It’s just his guess, but it does say again that fans outside Atlanta are not paying attention to a new reality.

The Falcons are the best team in the NFC… and it’s not close.

Vegas posted its 2017 win totals this week. The Falcons came in at over/under 10. Stop and think of that. 10.

In head coach Dan Quinn’s first season there was a lack of communication on offense, some self-admitted rookie coaching errors, a failure to believe fully in the system and a group of holdover players that did not fit what Quinn needed. Still if that club got out of its own way, that 8-8 team would easily have been a 10-win playoff club.

Last season Quinn was able to get more of his players, infuse more of his culture and create a broader and clearer sense of mission. It still didn’t totally sink in until after the bye week. From that point forward this club grew into a dominating force that lost two games because it still lacked one or two key points: full integration into the “Quinn-Way” and depth at key positions.

After this draft, and looking at the roster, this 2017 team is now clearly Quinn’s club.

It has speed, versatility, talent, depth and a new mission. It has everything Quinn was looking for. His players, his coaches, his schemes, his culture.

Quinn says “Brotherhood,” he means “Dominance.’

This club has the makings of the best team to ever come out of the organization and one that will wreak havoc every time it sets foot on the field.

Packers? Falcons keep beating their brains in as it is.

Seahawks? Please, they had to cheat to win.

Cowboys? I still think the Falcons would have put 42 on them in Dallas in the title game last year if that had come to pass.

Back to 10 wins… I look at the schedule and ask: Which game does this club lose? At New England? I think payback is gonna hurt like hell.  Sure they will likely lose a couple and maybe even one they shouldn’t. And yes, we cannot know injuries and the like.

But no team in this conference measures up. Not to a team with clearly the best offense in the game and now a defense that I firmly believe is top-5 (and it might be better than that).

Not to a team that is improved in the areas it was weakest (better pass rush, better depth, more speed, better return game).

Plainly said. The Falcons have the makings of a steamroller that could smash through its schedule.

They will get to 10 wins by no later than Week 12. And they will end up with the worst pick in the first round after they prove next February in Minnesota that they aren’t just the best in the NFC, they are the best in the NFL.

Get ready, Rise Up is about to dominate from the jump.


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