Stop Darren McFadden And The Falcons Win

Ezra Shaw - Getty Images

The Atlanta Falcons must put their run-stopping woes behind them.

I try not to overlook any team. In today's NFL, even the worst team can give you one hell of a fight. For examples of this in action, see the Chiefs versus the Ravens and the decimated Jets against the Texans last night.

That said, the Oakland Raiders are not the toughest team the Falcons have played this year. You can make a reasonable case that they're the worst team the Falcons have played outside of the Kansas City Chiefs, though I'd argue they're a bit better than that.

It's a fact that the Raiders are not really built to stop the Falcons. Their corners are not stellar, their pass rush is good but inconsistent, and they don't have anything approaching a consistent passing game. The only real threat—assume this is all on paper, because it certainly is—would be the Raiders ground game.

The Falcons had plenty of time to prepare for the Panthers and the Redskins and utterly failed to stop the ground game. Alfred Morris, in particular, brutalized the Falcons front seven. It's entirely possible that the return of Corey Peters will help slow opposing rushing offenses, but he's not eligible to return until after this game. C'est la vie.

The key will be putting the brakes on Darren McFadden. For the first time, I think the Falcons have to make stopping the run a priority and let Carson Palmer try to beat them through the air. Given his sometimes scattershot accuracy and habit of turning the ball over, that seems like a good gamble to take.

I'll turn it over to you for discussion. How would you stop McFadden?

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