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Atlanta is a great passing team, but has a lot of work to do everywhere else

Some sobering ranks from the folks at Football Outsiders.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers v Atlanta Falcons Photo by Scott Cunningham/Getty Images

The Falcons are quite literally a bottom five team in rushing offense, pass defense, and run defense through six weeks of the 2018 season. When you consider all of that, it’s sort of remarkable they’ve even been able to win two games thus far.

This information comes to us from Football Outsiders, and was collected by stats enthusiast ViennaFalcons on Twitter. It shows that while Matt Ryan, Julio Jones and the gang have essentially kept the Falcons in games by themselves and even won a couple, the rest of the team has been catastrophically awful, something we sort of knew but still somehow manages to be sobering when laid out.

Where do the Falcons go from here? At 2-4, they’re miraculously not completely dead in the water, and the run offense could improve significantly at any moment if Atlanta simply blocks better for Tevin Coleman and Ito Smith. The defense isn’t going to improve by leaps and bounds until Deion Jones gets back, but there’s reason to believe simply getting Duke Riley and Jordan Richards either out of the lineup or playing better would lift this team a little bit. Given that they’ve been losing almost all of their games by a handful of points, any genuine improvement could mean more games won, but they’ll need to figure this thing out before the passing attack falters, as it inevitably will at points this year. Thankfully, they look healthy and ready to go against the Giants.

A pessimist would say this is as good as it’s going to get, given Atlanta’s injuries and how unlikely it would be for Matt Ryan and this passing attack to truly hum every week going forward. An optimist might be moved to say that it can’t really help but get better from here, given how putrid the defense has been. I lean a little more toward the latter, but with how random and weird this season has been for Atlanta thus far, it’s probably best to just see how everything plays out.