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3 Falcons up, 3 Falcons down in Week 4 loss to Bengals

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Why, football gods, why?

NFL: Cincinnati Bengals at Atlanta Falcons Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

The Atlanta Falcons dropped another one, this time falling to the Cincinnati Bengals in a 37-36 shootout.

Who’s up and who’s down in the loss?

Up

Matt Ryan

There’s nothing that needs to be said about Ryan at this point. He churned out another masterful performance, finishing with 419 yards, three touchdowns, zero turnovers, and a 134.5 passer rating. Unfortunately as was the case last week, the heroic effort ended with a loss.

Calvin Ridley

The rookie wide receiver can’t stop scoring. Ridley leads the league in receiving touchdowns with six as he added two more against Cincinnati. He mostly earns himself a spot on this list for his route running ability as he juked Dre Kirkpatrick to another dimension en route to a 30-yard touchdown.

Takk McKinley

McKinley returned with to action from a groin injury with a vengeance, racking up three sacks and being disruptive for much of the game. He tweeted “I got you ATL” early in the week and made good on that promise.

Down

Desmond Trufant

It certainly wasn’t Trufant’s finest day, as Cincinnati’s receivers was able to consistently beat him and he was flagged twice: once for unnecessary roughness and another for defensive holding. We’ve come to expect a lot better from the cornerback, so his play on Sunday was a little surprising. Things were especially bad on the Bengals’ game-winning drive. He allowed Tyler Boyd to convert two fourth-down conversions an also let a should’ve been game-ending interception go right through his hands.

Robert Alford

It’s actually pretty miraculous A.J. Green ended up with just four receptions for 78 yards (and the game-winning touchdown) because he was able to get behind Alford on more than one occasion. Alford was flagged for defensive pass interference and defensive holding, the latter being declined since Green still made the 16-yard catch. He also lost contain on Giovani Bernard’s touchdown in the first quarter, allowing the running back to easily run outside for a 10-yard score.

Brian Poole

Poole finds himself on the down list for his unnecessary roughness penalty in the third quarter that gave the Bengals a first down instead of putting them in a 3rd and 17 situation. Fortunately, Damontae Kazee intercepted a tipped ball on the next play, but Poole and the rest of the Falcons defense cannot afford to commit penalties like that.

Who’s up and who’s down for you?