The Five Best Falcons Defensive Plays Of Week 12

Sean Weatherspoon put out that fire. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

Our series continues with the best and brightest moments of the Falcons defense against the Minnesota Vikings. No, they are not all Sean Weatherspoon.

You might recall that Dunta Robinson won in last week's poll thanks to his terrific diving and rolling interception. This week, I'm going to advocate strongly for one particular play. See if it matches your own.

Stephen Nicholas Blows Up Percy Harvin

On the very first drive of the game, Christian Ponder threw the ball behind the line of scrimmage to Percy Harvin, who desperately tried to make a play. Nope. Nicholas crushed him in the backfield and the Vikings lost eight yards on the play.

Sean Weatherspoon Eats Christian Ponder Alive

Fast forward to the second quarter, with 13:20 remaining. Sitting at 2nd and 8 on their own 24 yard line, Ponder takes the snap and scans the field. Sean Weatherspoon teleports behind the line and proceeds to devour Ponder, bones and all, for a sack and a loss of nine yards.

It was pretty beastly.

Lawrence Sidbury Also Eats Christian Ponder Alive

When Ponder's protection broke down, he was pretty much powerless to do anything about it. Witness this spectacular play, where Ponder sort of feebly fled from the pressure that seemed to be missing him from all sides before Sidbury's fleet feet caught up with him.

When the dust settled, Ponder had been sacked for a loss of 13 yards. Good on Sidbury.

Chris Owens Saves The Day From Percy Harvin

I know, I know. Technically this is special teams. It's still about as good a defensive play as you'll ever see.

Percy Harvin broke loose on a Matt Bosher kick that would have pinned a lesser man deep in the end zone. In fact, Bosher's booming kickoff went seven yards into the end zone, but Harvin didn't care. All he did was run over 100 yards out of there and toward a sure touchdown. Until Chris Owens, displaying a speed and hustle that is the envy of special teamers the world over, caught Harvin from behind on the Falcons' three yard line.

It was a truly amazing play, and one we should celebrate. That said, this next play gets my vote.

Sean Weatherspoon Ends Game, Toby Gerhart

Yeah, the Falcons had another drive, but it was Weatherspoon's huge stop that effectively ended the game.

Facing a 4th down and less than a yard, the Vikings decided they had to go for it. They were down ten points, after all, and they needed the touchdown if they were going to catch up. So they turned back and handed the ball to Toby Gerhart, echoing Mike Smith's decision against the Saints. It went about as well.

Weatherspoon immediately diagnosed the play and delivered 50 cc's of devastating tackling, blowing through the heart of the offensive line and wrapping up Gerhart for a two yard loss. It was a testament to his ability and an emphatic way to end the VIkings' last drive.

Your votes will decide it, though. Who had the best play of the week?

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