The Falcons sit at 6-4 and are still in the playoff race, but this season has definitely felt like a series of underwhelming performances. For many fans, it was even more frustrating because they would argue that the Falcons have one of the most talented rosters in the NFL.
Well, according to PFF and their latest power rankings, that belief is justified.
For those who don’t know, PFF (Pro Football Focus) is an advanced stats site that covers the NFL and college football. Their statistics are used all over the league and are heavily referenced during Sunday Night Football games. They aren’t perfect (no statistics are), but they do give a pretty good idea of how guys performed and the quality of players over the course of a season.
In their latest power rankings (Falcons are ranked 5th), they dropped this gem that caught the eye of yours truly:
The Falcons are finally starting to catch up to their metrics, as they possess the second-highest rated offense and the fourth-highest rated defense coming into this week.
The second-highest rated offense? The fourth-highest rated defense? That doesn’t seem to jive with the team we saw struggle against the Bills and Dolphins, but recent performances against the Cowboys and Seahawks give you a glimpse of what PFF sees.
It certainly helps that you have perennial pro-bowlers like Julio Jones and Matt Ryan on the field, but second year starters Keanu Neal, Deion Jones and De’Vondre Campbell have all graded out very well this year. When you add in players like Grady Jarrett, Adrian Clayborn, Alex Mack and Devonta Freeman to the mix, it’s easy to see how this roster does “grade” highly.
So why the struggles this year? Special teams can certainly be considered a factor, as well as some fluky as hell turnovers. In fact, even though he has 8 interceptions on the year, PFF has said that Ryan leads the league in fewest interceptable passes. His luck with tips and drops this year has been mind-blowing.
We’ve often said this roster is too talented to struggle for too long, and recent games give us reason to believe they may be turning the corner. This is a roster that can compete with any in the league and these PFF rankings only cement that belief further.
What are your thoughts on the high rankings for this Falcons team?