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What Would Be A Successful 2014 Season For The Atlanta Falcons?

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The question on everyone's minds.

Kevin C. Cox

The obvious answer to this is "a Super Bowl win." If that's your answer, don't let me stop you, but I'm hoping to get more detail in the course of this discussion.

We stand at a crossroads for the franchise. After five mostly successful seasons that fell short of Super Bowl berths, the wheels came flying off the wagon in 2013, dooming the Falcons to a 4-12 record and leading to fairly profound changes to the franchise. While Thomas Dimitroff and Mike Smith are still here, they're joined by a new assistant general manager, new position coaches, a possible transition toward more of a 3-4 base defense and several free agents.

In a nutshell, the Falcons are attempting to remake themselves as a tougher football team, one that doesn't have the same glaring weaknesses in the pass rush, run defense and ground game. Whether they're at least quasi-successful in year one of that experiment may determine who gets to keep their jobs in 2015 and beyond, and no matter how they talk in public, everyone on the team has to know that a winning record is at least part of that.

So I'll turn the floor over to you: What makes 2014 a successful season for the Falcons?