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This week’s big question: Can the offense please stop being terrible for like five seconds?


Baltimore Ravens v Atlanta Falcons Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

There are many questions facing this Falcons team, from “will they cut ties with members of the coaching staff?” to “how are they going to finally gin up a pass rush?” But the one that matters right here, right now as this team tries to survive its final four games pretty much all concern the offense.

I have some painful stats for you, because I am a jerk:

  • Over the last four games, the Falcons have rushed for 211 yards, or just under 52 yards per game;
  • The Falcons have allowed more than twice as many sacks (14) as they have managed for touchdown passes (6) over that span;
  • The Falcons have gone from being one of the best third down converting offenses in the entire NFL to 18/50 over their last four games, which is frankly abysmal;
  • The Falcons have not scored 20 points since November 4, over a month ago.

It doesn’t really matter who you blame for this, because it takes a village to suck this badly. Without Steve Sarkisian botching some play calls and Matt Ryan sailing some passes and receivers dropping them and Tevin Coleman being unable to make anything happen and especially the offensive playing at a woeful level, Atlanta could never manage this kind of performance with all their weapons.

It will not surprise you, then, to learn that my #1 question for this week has to do with the offense and whether they can turn things around. The Packers haven’t allowed more than 27 points in four weeks and their season high is 31, and they’ve held teams to under 250 yards passing in eight of their 12 games in 2018. Their weakness is the run, but the Falcons have shown little ability to take advantage of that of late.

My guess is that you’ll see some kind of triumph, with the Falcons panting and shoving their way past 20 points and actually getting something going on the ground. Part of that will be the potential return of Ben Garland and Ty Sambrailo over Ryan Schraeder at right tackle, I’d wager, and the other part will be Green Bay’s poor run defense and Atlanta’s desperate need to show that they aren’t quite that terrible. But I doubt they’ll get much above that, because the line is a huge limiting factor and the execution has been more or less uniformly terrible for a solid month. Maybe now that the pressure’s off they’ll surprise, but I wouldn’t hold your breath. I’ll say 350 total yards, 20 points on the dot.

How do you think the Falcons will fare on offense?