Not many people knew what to expect when Steven Jackson went down in the middle of the game versus the Saints last week. What the Atlanta Falcons discovered among themselves was a weapon that may push them into the playoffs.
Drafted in the early 4th round of the 2014 draft, Devonta Freeman lingered in the basement of Atlanta's deep running back corps. When Antone Smith was placed on IR, Freeman saw the field more often, but not as often as most of us would have liked. After the injury to Jackson, the ex-Florida State star came in and gave the Falcons a rejuvenating touchdown score. It was a moment that sparked momentum for an offense that had been stalling for much of the day. If Devonta can give the Falcons that same spark in Week 17 that he gave last week, we could be looking at a bit of a run with the Lions and Cardinals as possible opponents.
The NFC South Championship will bring out the absolute best in both clubs. The Falcons may look to bring out some new and creative ways to get Devonta the ball. Expect him to see the field today more than he has all year; maybe even carry the bulk of the running attack.
How much of an impact will Devonta have on Atlanta's offensive game-plan in the regular season finale?