What Matt Ryan and Julio Jones did today was truly impressive. Take away the quality of the Panthers’ secondary (which is suspect) and just consider this: Atlanta did something no other team in NFL history has ever managed.
This is pretty nuts. Both of those totals were franchise single game records, and Matt Ryan’s 503 yards clocked in at tied for 17th in NFL history, while Julio Jones’ 300 yards were good for sixth place in NFL history. It was an insanely productive effort that could have potentially been even better if the Falcons didn’t need to kneel to run out the clock at the end of the game, but we’ll certainly take the win and the place in history.
Ryan is on pace to enjoy the best year of his career by a fairly wide margin, while Julio Jones is suddenly back on track after a couple of quieter weeks. In case you’re wondering, Ryan could throw for well over 5,000 yards, 44 touchdowns, and just eight interceptions if he kept going like this, while Julio is on track for 88 catches, 488 yards, and 12 touchdowns. More importantly, the offense genuinely looks like one of the best units in the NFL, and it may be good enough to carry this team to the NFC South crown, even if the defense proves to be a sieve all year long.
Enjoy this one, Falcons fans. You’re not likely to see this level of production again.