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Taking a look at the Falcons offense through four games

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A look at some different stats, including individual contributions and explosive plays.

NFL: Carolina Panthers at Atlanta Falcons Jason Getz-USA TODAY Sports

After dropping 41 offensive points on a (formerly) impressive Carolina Panthers defense, the Atlanta Falcons offense is the buzz of the NFL. Ranking 1st in nearly all statistical categories, the offense is off to a start few people saw coming. When you consider the slow start against the Bucs, it makes the last three games all the more impressive. Here’s a look at the individual stats from our offense.

An Effective Running Game

Though the focus recently has been on the passing game, the running game has been highly effective through the first four games as well.

In particular, Devonta Freeman is off to a good start, with 330 yards on 57 carries. He has only 9 “negative” runs on the season and has 11 “explosive” runs (10+ yard gain). Those explosive runs are significant, and can be particularly demoralizing for opposing defenses.

Tevin Coleman’s performance on the ground isn’t as impressive, with 134 yards on 39 carries. However, he only has 2 “negative” runs to go with 2 explosive ones. Coleman may not create as many explosive plays, but he also appears to keep the chains moving forward a little better.

Funny enough, Matt Ryan has ran the ball 11 times for 48 yards and also has 2 explosive runs. Let’s hope this does not continue.

Passing the Lights Out

As for the passing game, it looks as healthy as ever. Take a look at these stats:

Julio being at the top is a surprise to no one. However, the ball distribution this year has been so much better than in 2015, when Julio got 33% of the targets. Jacob Tamme, Mohamed Sanu and Tevin Coleman are all above 10%, with 11 players catching at least 2 passes so far this year.

Additionally, the offense has generated 20 explosive passing plays in just four games (receptions of 20 or more yards), which is something we haven’t really seen from this team in the past.

The additions of Taylor Gabriel and Aldrick Robinson have also paid off, as Gabriel has pulled in 8 catches for 110 yards (13.75 avg) while Robinson has hauled in 4 for 47 (11.75). Tevin Coleman’s success as a receiver has caught everyone off-guard, with his 15 receptions yielding 181 yards and a very healthy 12 yards/catch.

Fans have talked about a “pick your poison” offense for years. It looks like the Falcons may have finally assembled one.

Conclusion

The Falcons have some very stiff competition coming up, so how these numbers translate over an entire season will be very interesting. At the very least, the Falcons have given us an exciting and explosive offense to watch, and it could very well carry them to a long-desired playoff berth.