The Falcons i what few of us thought they could do an almost beat the Chiefs. The performance, one in a long line of almosts and not quites from this season, stirred some strong feelings in the fanbase.
Our question today is this: Did almost knocking off one of the best teams in football make you feel better, worse, or not really either way about the 2020 season? We posed that question in our staff roundtable, but curious to get your thoughts as well.
There’s been a group of Falcons fans who have claimed that this team has talent, but the coaching is what holds it back. The Chiefs may be one of the best teams in the NFL right now, and Atlanta was a field goal away from taking them to overtime. Make no mistake, they still had something to play for and the Falcons gave them all they could take. This narrow loss shows that - with the right people in charge - there is a good bit of talent to work with going forward. A full blown “reset” may not be necessary. There’s still a ton of work to do with the defensive line and the offensive line has some big question marks going forward, but whatever GM and coach take over are going to see a lot of good players to start their new regime with. This game confirmed it. - David Walker
I felt pretty good about that Chiefs loss, considering how lopsided it had the potential to be and how impressive the defense was. It put me in the right frame of mind for this team to try to build on a foundation while also switching out some bricks in said foundation in 2021, rather than a complete teardown, and if they can do that it’s going to save us a couple of years of lousy football. I’ve had enough of those.
But it didn’t make me feel any better about the 2020 season. It’s abundantly clear that with better coaching, period, in the first five games of the season, the Falcons could’ve been competitive in those efforts. It’s beyond clear that with a better coach at the helm of the offense, this team could’ve been competitive in the 2020 season period. Watching the defense dominate perhaps the league’s best offense was astonishing, and seeing guys like Russell Gage and Calvin Ridley truly emerge this year even without Julio Jones again does help for the future. It’s unfortunately also evidence that this season didn’t have to be a lost one, even if this team was also going to need some retooling to be great. - Dave Choate
The Chiefs game helped solidify my thoughts on this 2020 Falcons team. It had everything: a winnable game, an impressive defensive performance, some signs of offensive line in between coaching incompetence, and a shockingly bad play from an otherwise stout player. Ultimately this team is too uneven but has a lot of great pieces moving forward. As we had expected, if you replay the 2020 season, the Falcons could be anywhere between 4 and 10 wins, proven by competing with the Super Bowl champs. It gives me some optimism for 2021 that with competent coaching and a few good moves, the Falcons will be right back to competing, but it is a reminder that the team burned up prime years with bad coaches and bad roster moves. - Matt Chambers