Fellow Falcoholics, the Atlanta Falcons ARE NOT as a franchise in a state of emergency by any stretch of the imagination. However, the season is in jeopardy in regard to going to the playoffs and reaching the ultimate goal of winning a Super Bowl. With that being said, tanking the rest of the season might be the best option the Falcons have to reach a Super Bowl. Let me explain.
To begin, I'd like to take a look at the Falcons roster makeup. When you look at the Falcons team as it stands today for this season, does it look like a Super Bowl team or even a playoff team to you? As of right now the Falcons have a fairly average roster with the injuries to Julio, Kroy, Ewing, Weatherspoon, Baker, SJax, the list is endless. Also, you can look to the trenches to see how far the Falcons can go this season, the Falcons did make it to the NFC Championship with a somewhat bad offensive line and bad defensive line but this is not the same units as they were just a year ago. The offensive line has 3 new starters(with the Baker injury) and 4 new starters if you count Konz's position change. With the abysmal play of both trenches you won't see a playoff run out of these Falcons, and there aren't many teams that come to mind that have won the Super Bowl with a bad offensive and defensive line. Other than that, the Falcons roster is set at all other offensive positions(excepted maybe FB, may just need to cut Ewing loose) and on defense a linebacker or two.
Being average in the NFL is probably the worst position to be in during the offseason. Sure it may show free agents that the team is close but really does that make a difference when everyone can see the injuries and the previous track record. Also, it gives you a relatively bad position in the draft because it's like we were just good enough to not get a top pick but just bad enough to not have a shot at the Super Bowl. The difference between getting a blue chip player on the team and a mid round pick is huge, just look at the success of the Falcons last few high draft picks (Ryan, Julio, Spoon) and you will see they have hit on the past few. This also would be a good year to have a high draft pick because of the many Quarterbacks that are going to be desirable in this years draft. The Falcons can move down a few spots with a QB needy team and stash a few picks for the depth and holes the Falcons so badly need to fill. They may have a chance at Clowney, just saying. (But I don't think his work ethic and hustle is something the Falcons want.
The schedule also factors into the reasoning why the Falcons MAY need to think about tanking the rest of the season. The truth of the matter is, the Falcons schedule doesn't get any easier from here. The Falcons have 4 of the next 6 games against division opponents including the Seahawks and then rap the season up with the Packers, Redskins, 49ers, and another division opponent. Lets face it, the Falcons have some pretty talented teams coming up and it will be tough sledding to get into the playoffs.
I personally don't think the Falcons need to tank the season YET. But it's becoming a better and better option as the weeks pass. If the Falcons lose 2 of the next 4 it will be too difficult in my mind to get to the playoffs and not to mention the Super Bowl, especially with the injuries the Falcons have acquired.
I realize people think this isn't something a true fan would want, but if the Falcons lost by 10 or less to teams outside of the Bills and the Cardinals then I wouldn't be too upset considering the lack of success in the redzone. But really, if you want to see the Falcons be set up for a long time, getting a high draft pick may be a blessing in disguise. And with the Falcons recent success with high picks, we could be rewarded for sitting through a bad season.
I'm really interested on what you guys think so let me know what you thing agree or not. (also this was written in like 20 minutes late at night so there may be errors and/or things that don't seem well thought out. I will most likely be editing this later.)