With INT’s coming against some of the NFL’s elite quarterbacks, including three Super Bowl MVPs, this season, DeCoud is quietly cementing his status as a safety poised to burst onto the national stage. And yes, “Meow” is part of the reason.
When the big name players are taken out of the equation, how to you evaluate a team? Simple: their backups. Robert McClain has made the most of his chances in Atlanta and once again proves you don’t need to be a big name to have a big impact for a team.
While Round One NFL Draftees get all of the press, there’s always a player drafted in later rounds that can also positively impact a team’s performance. For Atlanta, that player is Jon Babineaux
John Abraham may not have been drafted by Atlanta, but his six-plus years as a Falcon have definitely endeared him to the fans packing the Georgia Dome on Sundays.
Along with quarterback Matt Ryan, head coach Mike Smith has taken the Atlanta Falcons from an inconsistant team into a perpetual winning franchise. While the two have only been with the Falcons since 2008, this tandem has rewritten the record books for the franchise and show no sign of slowing up any time soon.
On a map, it may just be a couple hundred miles from Texas to Atlanta, but for Falcons kicker Matt Bryant, the road from high school to the NFL has sent him everywhere in the United States as well as parts of Europe before landing in Atlanta.
He may only be a third year player, but he’s not to be trifled with. With the Falcons currently at 4-0 for the season, they need to rely on their passing attack as well as their formidable defense led by Asante Samuel, John Abraham and the man known throughout Atlanta simple as “Spoon”.
With the NFL depending more and more upon a passing game, it’s refreshing to come across a player who still has the old-school running back “Three yards and a cloud of dust” mentality. Fortunately for the Falcons, their running back Michael Turner exemplifies that state of mind.
While Julio Jones may be getting most of the press as Matt Ryan’s favorite deep threat, Roddy White has been, and still remains, one of the best offensive weapons for the Falcons.
On April 25, 2012, the Atlanta Falcons acquired Samuel from the Philadelphia Eagles, trading a 2012 seventh-round draft pick for the cornerback. In his first game as a Falcon, Samuel recorded three tackles. With the loss of Atlanta’s other Pro Bowl cornerback, Brent Grimes, Samuel will be expected to keep the defense strong as Grimes recovers from a torn Achilles tendon.