The Falcons will finally hit the field soon for organized team activities soon after losing a week due to some horse hockey excessive contact penalty imposed by the league. When they do, Steve Sarkisian will begin the process of implementing his offense.
As Thomas Dimitroff has said repeatedly, don’t expect that offense to look drastically different than the one Kyle Shanahan rolled out. It will likely involve less fullback usage, may feature more three receiver and two tight end sets, and will certainly lack some of Shanahan’s particular brand of creativity, but the underpinnings will be the same.
Here’s the Falcon team site writeup on that. It’s a good look at the way Sarkisian is earning the team’s trust.
“We knew that we were going bring a guy in that has a lot of experience, can communicate well, he’s hit it off very, very well with Matt [Ryan] from a communication standpoint,” Dimitroff said of Sarkisian as a guest on Adam Schein’s radio show. “Sark came in knowing he wasn’t going to change much on this offense – he may change some terminology here and there, some general ideas. That was important for us.”
Steve Sarkisian is not Kyle Shanahan, but as Dimitroff notes, it was important for the team not to re-invent the wheel here. They’re fresh off the best offensive season in franchise history, will return most of the same pieces, and figure to have a better defense in 2017. The most important thing the Falcons could possibly do was not blow this thing up and go in a completely new direction without Shanny, who despite his failings in the Super Bowl enabled a lot of this team’s success in 2016. Sark will put his own spin on things, inevitably, and the offense will probably pull back due to injury, the changes he implements, or simple regression to the mean. It should still be a great unit.
We’ll see soon enough just how well Sark is working with everyone, and we’re only a few months away from seeing his offense in action. Let’s hope he can bring the kind of production we’ve come to expect.