The Falcons approach their preparation for each game the same way -- like it's a championship game. Coming off of a loss against the Saints, a division rival, this week is no different. The team is getting right back into seeing how much tey can improve each day before facing the Titans on the road on Sunday.
Quinn said that the emphasis for the day would be on competition, and it's one of his favorite parts of the week.
"A real thing for today is our competition," Quinn said. "I love this day because we get to go against one another so often as part of this practice. The offense going against the defense, just working our skills to see how good we can get today."
This week is a good test of the Falcons' ability to put a loss behind them. The team attributed much of their early success to their focus on the next opponent and their commitment to preparing the same way each week. That's probably more important after a loss.
Dan Quinn is pleased with how it's going so far this week.
"I think one of the things that we want to get right back to is playing our championship style, and that starts with the preparation first," Quinn said. "So when the wins and losses happen, both of them, we deal with it. We let that pass, and then we get right back to see how good we can get."
The coaching staff, however, can't afford to solely focus on the next opponent. They have to also address the issues that have hindered the team against Washington and New Orleans and work to correct those mistakes.
Quinn said that the coaching staff is absolutely looking back to determine what needs to be corrected and how to fix it.
"We wanted to make sure, here are the things that we're doing well, and here are the things that we felt like we could improve on," Quinn said. "So that's been the emphasis when we got back to it on Monday, and then went back through it again today."
It seems like the coaching staff has a good handle on what needs to be corrected, so now it's just a matter of doing it.
"There's lots of little things. Like, defensively, communication was one for us at the top of the list, so we tried to emphasize that as hard as we could," Quinn said. "The tackling is going to be a big thing for us defensively as well. Offensively, all the timing that goes with the routes that we do — that's another big one for us. Targeting in the run game — all those things that are at the core of our fundamentals, we went right back to it."
There was speculation that the signing of Philip Wheeler didn't bode well for Justin Durant returning to the field, but Quinn said that wasn't necessarily the case.
"Well, the good news is today, we have everybody participating at some level," Quinn said. It's a welcome change for a team that has appeared to sorely miss linebacker Durant and center Mike Person in particular. We'll have a better sense of the extent of their participation when the injury report is released later today, but it is encouraging news.
Your thoughts on the team's preparation and Durant returning to practice?