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The Falcons have turned down the music at practice to improve defensive communication

This is what a couple of weeks of communication errors will get you.

Atlanta Falcons vs New Orleans Saints Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images

The Falcons have gotten to where they are not just because the defense has been lousy at fundamentals the last couple of weeks, but because they haven’t appeared capable of communicating effectively. There have been far too many plays where, even as the pass rush and tackling have slightly improved, the team’s coverage has looked disorganized at its best and downright clueless at its worst.

Now Dan Quinn is making communication a focus for the week before the Falcons have to deal with a potent Steelers passing attack. He’s starting by...turning down the music?

It’s sort of absurd on its face, as much of this Falcon season has been, but it does make sense to try the tactic and see where it gets Atlanta. The Falcons are trying to get this thing done minus Ricardo Allen and Deion Jones, two of their most effective communicators on defense, and the lapses we’ve seen since Allen in particular went out certainly seem due to a failure to understand responsibilities on given plays.

So if turning down the music lets these players communicate better during practice, I’m all for it. The challenge—and frankly, the problem—is turning a few well-heard comments in practice into a more cohesive, organized defense in time for Sunday. Let’s just say I’m skeptical we’ll see a massive improvement this week.