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3 Falcons up, 3 Falcons down in Week 3 win over Lions

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What hangover?

NFL: Atlanta Falcons at Detroit Lions Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports

The Atlanta Falcons emerged Sunday as the only undefeated team in the NFC with a 30-26 victory over the Detroit Lions.

Who’s up and who’s down in the win?


Devonta Freeman

Simply put, Freeman’s unstoppable. His mix of agility and trucking power make him an absolute joy to watch. Freeman put together the seventh 100-yard rushing performance of his career, totaling 106 yards and a touchdown on 21 carries. He also added three receptions for 32 yards. There’s really no question why the Falcons gave the fourth-year running back an extension.

Takk McKinley

After getting so close in the previous two games, Takk finally notched the first sack of his career. He also generated tons of pressure and probably should’ve had multiple sacks. Sure, the Falcons will miss Vic Beasley, but Takk looks more than ready to fill that void. When Beasley returns, watch out.

Brian Poole

Poole had a solid game — and should’ve had about three interceptions — but what gets him on this list is his awareness on the game’s final play. If he didn’t reach down to tap Golden Tate on the shoulder as the Lions receiver lunged for the end zone, Detroit wins that game. Tate’s knee was down, but it wouldn’t have mattered if he was untouched before the ball crossed the white end zone line.


Ty Sambrailo

Same thing as last week: Please get well soon, Ryan Schraeder.

Mohamed Sanu

Through the first couple of weeks, Sanu was one of the league’s top receivers, according to Pro Football Focus. He came out on fire on the game’s first drive, catching three passes for 26 yards and a touchdown. Then early in the fourth quarter and deep in Lions territory, he tipped a pass into the hands of Darius Slay. He added just one catch for two yards after the first quarter.

Desmond Trufant

Trufant nearly handed the Lions the win on the final drive — although both calls were iffy at best. A questionable defensive holding penalty negated an interception by Robert Alford that would’ve ended the game. A defensive pass interference in the end zone on what was inarguably an uncatchable ball set the Lions up with 1st and goal at the one-yard line.