It’s the fourth August Falcons game and the third Falcons preseason game, and probably the last time we’ll see starters play snaps of consequence until Week 1. That’s a good thing, in my estimation, but may tonight be light on injuries and heavy on enjoyable football either way.
Tonight you’ll want to watch to see the following, which is by no means an exhaustive list but should help you calibrate your eyes:
- How the offensive line looks with Matt Gono in and with last week’s shaky performance behind them
- The Brian Hill vs. Qadree Ollison battle, which could heat up if Ollison gets work ahead of Hill
- The returner battle between Marcus Green, Kenjon Barner and Olamide Zaccheaus
- What’s happening at linebacker, where Jermaine Grace is threatening to run away with a roster spot
- Chris Cooper at nickel cornerback
Here’s the info you need. Enjoy the game, chat with your fellow fans here, and check back often for some quarterly updates!
Washington made a field goal, goodness this game was not fun to watch. 19-7 Washington.
Etling scrambled, Qadree Ollison ran quite well. The game ended.
The defense got the quick three and out, with Ra’Shede Hageman, Duke Riley, and Jermaine Grace all getting in on the fun. Unfortunately, Marcus Green muffed the fair catch and Hageman got hit with a facemask penalty, giving Washington another shot. They took advantage immediately by punching it in from a short distance out, taking back the lead. 13-7
Qadree Ollison and Tony Brooks-James ran well, but Danny Etling came under some pressure and looked very overmatched en route to a punt. An Ito Smith special teams penalty just added to the fun! Lots of fun.
Washington petered out, but then Olamide Zaccheaus muffed another punt and Washington managing a field goal. 16-7
The next drive saw Danny Etling scramble a mile, Qadree Ollison pick up 12 yards on two carries, and the quarter was over.
The Falcons punted.
Bruce Carter missed a key tackle and Washington picked up 28 yards, but they stalled out from there. Chris Cooper has been such a stellar tackler at cornerback it’ll be a small wonder if he doesn’t make the team.
The Falcons had to punt again. Ryan scrambled for the second time, a product of guys simply not getting open, and took a couple of solid pops from Montez Sweat. I want him out of the game.
The Falcons happily stopped the next drive cold thanks to a lovely sackerception caused by Deadrin Senat and snagged by Takk McKinley.
The Falcons made quick work of the Washington defense, with Ito Smith driving it in from five yards out for the score. 7-3.
The starting defense wisely ducked out at this point, but so did Jaeden Graham with an ominous sounding knee injury. The defense scuffled mightily until Washington got very close to the goal line, at which point a couple of heroic stops by Duke Riley, a pass breakup by Jermaine Grace, and a penalty saved the day, though they did hit a field goal. 7-6
Matt Ryan couldn’t connect on three straight tries, though Christian Blake put in an extreme effort against Josh Norman. Punt.
The half ended before Washington could score again.
Ito Smith’s kickoff...called back. Devonta Freeman’s first run...called back. This team’s discipline issues are apparently going nowhere. Fortunately for the Falcons, it improved from there, with Ryan finding Mohamed Sanu and Devonta Freeman, Sharrod Neasman converting the fake punt attempt (oooo shiny), and Justin Hardy making a pretty contested grab for 24 yards. A Matt Ryan scramble and change later, the team was off toe the races, backed up only by a Jamon Brown penalty. Unfortunately, Giorgio Tavecchio whiffed on a 39 yard field goal, the absolute last thing any Falcons fan needed to see in this one.
Washington got spun up quickly after that disappointing mess, picking up nearly 30 yards in short order. The Falcons tightened up on defense thanks primarily to excelent effort by Grady Jarrett, but Dustin Hopkins hit the field goal. 0-3.
Ito Smith exists, though, so things are good. Ito picked up nine on a Matt Ryan pass and then 10 on the ground to get the new drive rolling, but it ultimately sputtered out with an unproductive screen pass and further slowdown.
How to watch Falcons - Injury Lawsuits in Waiting
What: Preseason Week 3
Where: Mercedes-Benz Stadium, Atlanta, Georgia
When: Thursday, August 22, 7:30 p.m. EST
TV Channel: CW69
Streaming: NFL Gamepass
Radio Channel: 92.9 The Game/Westwood One/SiriusXM
All-Time Records: Washington leads the all-time series 15-10-1, mostly because Washington was once very good. Atlanta has won the last six straight.
Opponent Site: Hogs Haven