Matt Ryan has had a horrible year. Everyone associated with the Falcons has had a horrible year. Tony Gonzalez never should have come back, Julio Jones is out for the season, the defense is a mess, and we can't even make fun of Mike Smith screwing up fourth downs because the Falcons haven't played a relevant game in six weeks.
If everyone associated with this team could just cut their losses and move on to next year, you gotta think they'd all go for it. But NOPE, that's not how this works.
It's just going to keep getting more miserable. This was obvious early on Sunday against the Bucs. Matt Ryan took the Falcons down to the Tampa 35 on the opening drive, and then got crunched by Gerald McCoy for a four-yard loss.
In an ordinary season that isn't a total fucking nightmare, this would be a minor setback. In Matt Ryan's season ... the four-yard sack gave way to a 10-yard sack on the very next play, and the drive ended right there. Everything goes wrong, always. This is the law of the Falcons this year.
The Atlanta Falcons are playing the Seattle Seahawks in the divisional round of the NFC playoffs on Sunday. Vegas has the Falcons favored by 2.5, but you get +3 for just being the home team, which essentially means Vegas has no clue what it thinks.
Thankfully for you, the curious public often interested in how the future will turn out, I do know what I think. Who knows what "algorithms" and "formulas" and "educated guesses" places like Odds Shark implement (cue my knees getting Gilloolied in 5 ... 4 ... 3 ...), but chances are they all ignore the most important aspect of predicting outcomes: feelings.
I know the Falcons are going to win, because that's what my feelings tell me will happen. That's all I've got, and I couldn't be more thrilled.
A few days before Christmas 2006, having just arrived home in Atlanta for my break between college quarters, I was driving near the Georgia Dome when I spotted a new arrival in the neighborhood — an odd, trailer-like setup erected in a parking lot. Having grown up around the area, whatever it was seemed out of the ordinary, so I hit a U-turn and went to check it out. In that parking lot sat an "Authentic Louisiana-Style" restaurant operating almost as a food truck. About 15 months had passed since Hurricane Katrina, but this was my first real-life experience with what had previously just been data regarding the sheer amount of New Orleanians that had migrated to cities like Houston and Atlanta. I looked at the establishment and felt good. To know that someone could make a life in my city, especially after such a horrible disaster, was a beautiful thing.
The following year, I remember watching the Saints-Falcons game on Monday Night Football in the Georgia Dome. Fully understanding that there was a sizable New Orleans population in the city that had no plans of going back home, I was curious to see how the Dome would look. The answer — very black-and-gold. It was nauseating. While I felt it bubbling in 2006, especially with our unfortunate "damned if you win, damned if you lose" opportunity to play the Saints in the first game back in the Superdome, it was at this point that I knew a real rivalry was no longer just brewing.