Another preseason game is in the books, and that means we have yet another excuse to find out who is raising and lowering their stock this preseason. Here’s a closer look.
Allen was a pass breakup dynamo in limited action, including one TD-saving deflection while covering Jermaine Gresham. Any thought that Brian Poole or Damontae Kazee or anyone else on the roster was going to challenge Ricardo for snaps at free safety can be safely put to rest heading into the start of the season.
He went from being a shrug-your-shoulders defensive free agent signing to defensive dynamo within 23 snaps. Crawford wound up with a sack and four defensive stops, including an impressive tackle-for-loss/forced fumble. With the Falcons’ heavy defensive line rotation, Crawford will certainly get opportunities this season. Saturday’s outing leaves us feeling even better than we did before about the disruptive potential of the Falcons defensive line this season.
Takk is another player who stood out in limited time. He found ways to pop off the screen when rushing the passer, even on plays where he didn’t get to the quarterback - just purely based on his athleticism. He also showed some nice play-to-the-whistle mentality (including tripping up Chris Johnson from behind on a run) that bodes well for his future. Notably, he received more opportunities with the starting special teams units this week.
The Falcons aren’t going to make their roster decisions based on a single play. But on a day where the Falcons passing offense had its fair share of problems, credit to Magee for making the highlight of the day on a 57 yard touchdown grab. Magee hopes it could lead to more looks next game which could lead to a practice squad opportunity.
Coleman reminded us of his skills in the running game and passing game. With the starting offense unable to get anything going via the deep passing game, Coleman made the most of his limited opportunities to move the sticks.
Falcons passing offense/Matt Ryan
Obviously, no one’s panicking about Matt Ryan or the Falcons’ passing offense based on anything that happened on Saturday. Nonetheless, the passing offense was inarguably out of sync. Ryan was plagued by inaccuracy and an inability to complete deep passes. No matter whether it was Mercedes-Benz opening jitters or the fact that the Cardinals shade of red is way too similar to the Falcons shade of red, hopefully those kinks exit the system quickly and the Falcons passing offense picks back up right where it left off last season. Specifically in that last game of last season when they played Green Bay. Because that was a really great game and would be a great place to pick up from.
Daniel Brunskill/OT depth
Cap Capi dominated the stat line for the Cardinals, and unfortunately, much of that came when lined up against Brunskill. Frankly, Brunskill has done little in recent weeks to inspire confidence that he could be counted on if pressed into action this season (even though the Falcons have been playing him extensively). With Austin Pasztor still recovering from injury and Kevin Graf getting carted off the field in the fourth quarter, the Falcons have to at least be somewhat concerned about their depth at offensive tackle. They should be.