As an Atlanta Falcons fan, you're used to inevitable dispair. With no Super Bowl victories in the nearly 50 year history of the team, every season has ended in disappointment. Sure, there are seasons we can be proud of, for whatever reason. And sure, the highs are always worth the inevitable lows. But no matter what, we always make our way back, ready and raring for some soul-crushing Falcons football.
Things are about to ramp up, folks. Believe it or not, the season is right around the corner. Training camp will kick off next month and high expectations will run rampant. A new head coach, new coordinators, and an infusion of depth: there's a lot to be optimistic about. If you're a relentless, unapologetic homer like me, a Lombardi seems like an immediate possibility. But even if you have a more realistic mindset, it's easy to get caught up in the moment.
So what are the fatal flaws we may overlook heading into a new season? I'm specifically referring to those deficiencies we may willfully ignore amidst all the excitement. For me, two come to mind. First, the absence of a true receiving threat at tight end. We've spent a lot of time since free agency and the draft convincing ourselves that some combination of Tony Moeaki, Jacob Tamme, and Levine Toilolo can get the job done. Given offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan's preferred scheme, that may be true. Add in the addition of capable WR Leonard Hankerson and ostensibly capable rookie WR Justin Hardy, this could be the best supporting cast Matt Ryan has ever had. Then again, there's the distinct possibility that the TE corps is what it is: adequate but unremarkable.
Another potential fatal flaw is free safety. We've heard good things about second year DB Ricardo Allen during OTAs, and we know how motivated Charles Godfrey is to reestablish himself. But to be frank, that's not confidence-inspiring depth. We're woefully thin at free safety - that's a fact. An injury to one or both of those men and we're hitting the waiver wire, pulling some guy off the street to start alongside William Moore. Now that's scary.