For the first time since 2012, the Atlanta Falcons have won their opening two games. That seemed highly unlikely, as the New York Giants were in the red zone with a 20-10 lead. They were moving the ball without much resistance through Odell Beckham and Shane Vereen. Eventually, Atlanta's defense started to complete tackles and forced a pivotal third down. That led to Kroy Biermann blindsiding Eli Manning for a game-changing fumble. The often chastised defensive end changed the complexion of the game. Dan Quinn credited Biermann for the momentum swing.
Kroy Biermann set it off. He gave us the chance to go out there and fight back. That sack and forced fumble ignited the comeback. We have so many different players that can provide that spark. Today, it was Kroy and we couldn't be happier for him.
Matt Ryan echoed those sentiments, along with crediting a new tight end for Atlanta's inspired comeback.
Kroy Biermann got it going for us in the red zone. We knew we had to get it going immediately from that turnover. One of the big plays was the throw down the sideline to Jacob Tamme. We were able to change the field position in one play and then converted on a few third downs. Those two plays really helped change the game. It was a true team effort out there.
Ryan had to make several key throws to complete the comeback. No throw was more significant than the 37-yard completion to Julio Jones. The franchise quarterback was confident that play-call was going to be a difference maker.
It looked pretty good from where I was standing. Julio is obviously an unbelievable player, who had another huge game. In that situation, we saw one-on-one coverage. Kyle called a great play. All I had to do was put the ball in a spot for him to complete the play.
Kyle Shanahan has been credited heavily for Atlanta's efficient offense. While they struggled through various points of yesterday's game, the play book looks more diversified compared to last season. It has led to utilizing play action more, which has led to more overall offensive balance. Ryan has started to become comfortable within the new offense.
Things are different now. We have a new coordinator this year. We've done a pretty good job adjusting to the new scheme and will certainly continue to do better. Play action is an important part of what were going to do, along with running the football. We've done a decent job in both elements. I think we'll have to run the ball better than we did today. That will be done as the offensive line continues to grow as a unit. In the end, I'm just fired up that we found a way to win.
Two key free agent signings made major contributions throughout yesterday's win. Leonard Hankerson and Jacob Tamme were signed to fulfill two major holes from last year. A pass-catching tight end and a third wide receiver that can beat man coverage. Ryan was ecstatic about both players becoming more involved within the offense.
I think we had something like forty pass attempts. Any time you're going to throw the ball forty times, you have to distribute the ball. Both guys did a nice job of stepping up for us. Leonard Hankerson made a great catch for us in the back of the end zone. He also had a huge third-down conversion that went nearly a touchdown. I'm fired up for him.
Hank has worked really hard from the moment he got here. Tamme is the ultimate professional. He goes out there and always plays hard. Like I mentioned before, he made one of the big plays that helped swing momentum. I'm really fired up about that. Devonta Freeman also made some huge plays for us down the stretch. He's always been capable of stepping up when we needed him.
There have been a lot of changes over the past six months. The thing that I'm most excited about is that we're finding ways to get the job done. That's what good teams do. We obviously need to continue to get better going forward, but every road win is so valuable in this league.
Ryan's lone touchdown pass went to Hankerson, which couldn't have been more precise. Despite being covered by Trumaine McBride and Craig Dahl, Ryan found enough space to thread the needle into Hankerson. They had prior experience practicing that particular play throughout July and August.
That specific play we always worked on during camp. It's one of those things, where you need to put the ball on the top shelf in the back of the end zone. We feel that it's a safe place to throw a pass into the end zone. We always trust our guys to make plays like that. I trust Hank in that situation and he made a great play.
Despite receiving positive contributions from several players, Julio Jones has clearly become the focal point. The superstar wide receiver already has 22 catches this season. Ryan has always been thankful for his ability to make any type of catch. He also compliments his overall positive attitude.
You couldn't ask for a better teammate. In the locker room, he's always trying to be a better teammate. I look at him sometimes and say that you're the best. He never looks back satisfied. That's what makes him the special player that he is.
I've been fortunate to play with a lot of great players throughout my career specifically receivers. Roddy White has always been consistent throughout his entire career. Tony Gonzalez was another guy that would make plays that you would be amazed to see him make at his age. Julio is in that same mold of making plays that leave you speechless. Those are the type of players that you have to feed, even when they're not open.
Ryan has notoriously struggled against the Giants away from home. Through three games, he had gone winless and taken several hits through each loss. That ugly streak finally ended yesterday for the star quarterback.
Each team is different. Each year is different. This has always been a tough place to play because they have a great quarterback and a coach that will always have them coached up. That's a tough combination, especially when they play hard every week. We are thrilled to come out of here with a win.
While walking into the press conference, Arthur Blank was exuberant about the team's comeback victory. He briefly spoked about the team's failures inside MetLife Stadium over the years.
It has always been tough going here. I'm relieved to have finally made the trip here and I can leave with a smile on my face. Matt Ryan showed incredible poise once again and Julio Jones is everything you want as a wide receiver.
Quinn has specified that finishing strong will always be one of the team's main objectives. Atlanta has fulfilled that objective so far this season. Julio Jones credits finishing strong towards the team's overall success.
It's mostly about how you finish. Every now and then, we are going to get off to a slow start. We know we are always going to be in the game. That's what happened today but we knew that we would have our opportunities. Our defense stepped up and we made sure to finish the job. It's always about how you finish and we've done that in a big way so far through these two games.