Now 1-1, the Atlanta Falcons return home after a scant three days off to host the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. A win gives the Falcons a winning record again and some confidence after the Cincinnati loss, and the opportunity to soothe a lot of anxiety over the state of the defense and offense alike.
The Buccaneers are 0-2 and are just trying to right the ship after a miserable start to the season, and they'll head into this game missing Gerald McCoy and Mason Foster in the middle of their defense. That gives the Falcons' ground game a little more breathing room, and certainly helps out Matt Ryan as he tries to rebound from last week. Given that this is a divisional game, it'll likely be a good one despite the injuries.
The Falcons hit the road next week to play the Minnesota Vikings and New York Giants in sequence before hosting the Chicago Bears at home, and they have a prime opportunity to rattle off a few wins in that stretch and improve offensively and defensively for the tougher opponents ahead.
I anticipate a Falcons win, albeit perhaps not a convincing one. As always, I'll root for the blowout. Complete game information follows.
Falcons vs. Buccaneers Game Info
Game time: Thursday, September 19, 8:25 p.m. EST
Location: Georgia Dome, Atlanta, Georgia
TV Channel: NFL Network and CBS
Radio: 92.9 the Game and 790 the Zone
Prediction: Falcons win by 7
The Competition: Bucs Nation
Injury Report: Roddy White and Jake Matthews questionable, Gerald McCoy and Mason Foster out for TB
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