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In Your Opinion: What Mistake(s) Derailed the 2012 Falcons Season?

Fact: Thomas Dimitroff has never made a mistake; once he almost did, but then he didn't

Todd Kirkland

2012 was by no means a bust for the Falcons. It was undoubtedly Matt Ryan's best campaign. It was a season where we saw Julio Jones come into his own. Despite all scientific odds, Tony Gonzalez continued to defy age, gravity, and the space-time continuum. And yet San Francisco cheated their way to a Superbowl bounced the Falcons out of the playoffs. What does that mean? It means something didn't go right.

Blame is a funny thing in football. We can blame one player or one unit. We can blame one particular play. We can just blame Dave, because he's responsible for world hunger, bird flu, and the great American malt liquor shortage. In practice, assigning blame is complicated. Even so, I can list a few things that could have gone better in 2012. For example, notwithstanding Jacquizz Rodgers' personal successes, the team's collective running game was spotty at best. The same could be said about our pass rush. And to that effect, the front office made the now-questionable decision to franchise tag Brent Grimes, a cost-prohibitive move that certainly affected the team in free agency.

And now it's your turn. In your humble but notoriously accurate opinions, what was the biggest mistake of the 2012 season? More importantly, how do we keep history from repeating itself?