The Atlanta Falcons come out of the bye with a lot of hard feelings about the way they've played over the last month, and a whole lot of opportunity. Despite going 1-3 before the bye, they're 6-3, two games up on the final wild card spot, and needing nothing more than improvement to ensure they stay there.
That improvement won't be easy to come by, necessarily, but Dan Quinn went out of his way in his weekly presser to tell fans exactly what they wanted to hear. To wit:
Atlanta's made at least one big change to the pass rush: In nickel packages, Schofield has been moved to the right side next to Clayborn.— Andrew Hirsh (@andrewhirsh) November 16, 2015
Quinn is impressed with Philip Wheeler's grasp of the defense in a short amount of time. Says his defensive role will grow. #INDvsATL— Atlanta Falcons (@AtlantaFalcons) November 16, 2015
Quinn: Roddy White is an important guy for us. Going forward, he should be a significant factor for us. #INDvsATL— Atlanta Falcons (@AtlantaFalcons) November 16, 2015
I had been particularly down on Roddy's chances of getting more targets, but if the Falcons are serious about tailoring the offense a bit to get him open, maybe we will see it. Given how much angst there has been concerning Roddy's involvement, this is likely sweet music to the ears of many.
Getting Wheeler more snaps and putting Schofield next to Clayborn should help the team's speed at linebacker and pass rush, respectively, though neither are going to be game-changing solutions. They're simply potential upgrades at trouble spots for Atlanta, and given how many trouble spots the Falcons had over the last month, any moves that recognize the issues and may help to fix them are welcome.
We'll see what Quinn's got up his sleeves that he didn't mention, but hopefully what he says today bears fruit for a team that needs to get back on track.