The loss earlier today didn’t just put the Falcons further out of the playoff hunt and bring an offseason of sweeping change a little closer. It also put the Falcons on track for their worst three season stretch since 2013-2015, and one more loss will put them on a collision course with a grimmer part of their history.
Atlanta’s record is currently 4-8. The last time they were .500 or below for three straight seasons was the disastrous 2013-2015 stretch, where injuries at receiver and an unbelievably terrible offensive line conspired with Dirk Koetter and Mike Nolan to ruin 2013 and 2014. A 6-0 Falcons start in 2015 went to waste as the team entirely collapsed in the over the final 10 games to go 8-8, but the Falcons were actually a winning football team in 2016 or 2017 before the wheels fell off again. The presence of Koetter on both of those squads feels like less than a coincidence.
If Atlanta goes 8-8 on the season, they’ll match 2005-2007 (when they had two losing seasons and one .500 season) and 2013-2015 for sheer ineptitude. If they lose one more game, putting them on a collision course for three straight 7-9 seasons or worse, they’ll become the first Falcons squad to post three losing seasons in a row since the 1999-2001 teams.
It’s hard to believe the Falcons put up one of the biggest wins in franchise history in terms of scoring margin just last week and we’re right back to talking about the grimmest parts of this team’s recent history, but that’s the Falcons for you.