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Simulating the Falcons 2021 season on Madden 22

A.I. decides how the Falcons 2021 season will go.

Although regular season football has yet to return, the NFL’s preseason is well underway. With that, is the annual release of EA Sports’ Madden video game, with this year being Madden 22. Similar to last year, I’m simulating the Atlanta Falcons’ 2021 season on Madden 22 to see what fun statistics and outcomes are made within the virtual world.

Just to be clear, I am in no way interfering with whatever outcome the video game has for the Falcons. I won’t be signing any players or participating in any games to see what record and statistics the game predicts for the Falcons in 2021.

With that being said, let’s get to it.

Roster (Week 1-18)


QB: Matt Ryan, AJ McCarron, Feleipe Franks

RB: Mike Davis, Cordarrelle Patterson, Javian Hawkins, Qadree Ollison

FB: John Raine

WR: Calvin Ridley, Russell Gage, Tajae Sharpe, Olamide Zaccheaus, Frank Darby

TE: Kyle Pitts, Hayden Hurst, Lee Smith, Josh Harris (LS)

LT: Jake Matthews, Jason Spriggs

LG: Jalen Mayfield, Sam Jones

C: Matt Hennessy, Drew Dalman

RG: Chris Lindstrom

RT: Kaleb McGary, Willie Beavers


DL: Grady Jarrett, John Cominsky, Marlon Davidson, Ta’Quon Graham, Adetokunbo Ogundeji

DT: Tyeler Davison, Chris Slayton, Olive Sagapolu

LB: Jacob Tuioti-Mariner, Shareef Miller

LB: Deion Jones, Mykal Walker

LB: Foyesade Oluokun

LB: Dante Fowler Jr., Brandon Copeland

CB: A.J. Terrell, Kendall Sheffield, Darren Hall

CB: Fabian Moreau, Isaiah Oliver, Avery Williams

S: Richie Grant, T.J. Green, JR Pace

S: Duron Harmon, Jaylinn Hawkins

There we some very surprising preseason decisions made, including the release of safety Erik Harris and fullback Keith Smith. Both probably won’t happen in real life, but interesting to see the game decided to make the moves and roll with undrafted free agents in their place.


Week 1: Eagles 28, Falcons 19

Week 2: Falcons 20, Buccaneers 28

Week 3: Falcons 52, Giants 24

Week 4: Washington 21, Falcons 25

Week 5: Jets 21, Falcons 24 (London)

Week 6: BYE WEEK

Week 7: Falcons 20, Dolphins 27

Week 8: Panthers 30, Falcons 20

Week 9: Falcons 40, Saints 34

Week 10: Falcons 28, Cowboys 21

Week 11: Patriots 28, Falcons 32 (Thursday Night Football)

Week 12: Falcons 29, Jaguars 24

Week 13: Buccaneers 38, Falcons 7

Week 14: Falcons 35, Panthers 32

Week 15: Falcons 21, 49ers 28

Week 16: Lions 23, Falcons 34

Week 17: Falcons 30, Bills 24

Week 18: Saints 35, Falcons 38

Wild Card: Falcons 24, Rams 7

Divisional: Falcons 27, Cowboys 33

So in the end, the Falcons had a pretty solid season. Probably a best case scenario in real life, but they finished 11-6 and swept the New Orleans Saints. Additionally, the team managed to not only make the playoffs, they made it to the Divisional Round where their season ended in a loss to the Dallas Cowboys. This would be a fitting (or, depending on your perspective, unforgivable) end for the team to lose to former Falcons Dan Quinn, Keanu Neal and Damontae Kazee.


  • QB Matt Ryan - 5023 yards, 409/640 attempts, 38 TDs, 17 INTs, 63% completion rate, 2 rushing TDs
  • RB Mike Davis - 204 carries, 780 yards, 14 rushing TDs, 4 receiving TDs
  • RB Cordarrelle Patterson - 123 carries, 459 yards, 3 rushing TDs, 7 receiving TDs
  • WR Russell Gage - 86 catches, 1192 yards, 9 TDs
  • WR Calvin Ridley - 73 catches, 1021 yards, 5 TDs
  • TE Kyle Pitts - 102 catches, 997 yards, 11 TDs
  • LB Foyesade Oluokun - 124 tackles, 2.5 sacks, 4 INTs
  • DT Grady Jarrett - 46 tackles, 7.0 sacks
  • CB A.J. Terrell - 99 tackles, 2 INTs
  • K Younghoe Koo - 17/17 attempts, 55 long, 53/54 PAT

Not the most realistic statistics I’ve ever seen, but it is a game after all. Kyle Pitts had the season we all hope he will and Calvin Ridley somehow became the teams third receiving option. What a season for Russell Gage, who took a massive leap as the team’s second wide receiver putting up top wide receiver numbers.

Team Awards and League Outcome

Falcons Pro Bowlers

  • QB Matt Ryan
  • WR Russell Gage
  • TE Kyle Pitts
  • LB Foyesade Oluokun
  • K Younghoe Koo

NFL Awards

  • League MVP - QB Patrick Mahomes KC
  • NFL Coach of the Year - Arthur Smith ATL
  • AFC/NFC Offensive Player of the Year - QB Patrick Mahomes KC, RB Christian McCaffrey CAR
  • AFC/NFC Defensive Player of the Year - LB Von Miller DEN, DT Aaron Donald LAR
  • AFC/NFC Offensive Rookie of the Year - QB Zach Wilson NYJ, QB Justin Fields CHI
  • AFC/NFC Defensive Rookie of the Year - LB Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah CLE, LB Jamis Davis WAS
  • Super Bowl LVI - Cowboys 17, Browns 24

The Falcons’ Pro Bowl lineup is pretty believable, although I’d bet on Ridley making it over Gage. It’s hard not to be glad to see Oluokun finally getting the respect he deserves as a talented, young linebacker, even if it’s just in Madden for now. Also, it was great to see Arthur Smith take home the coach of the year award. After going 11-6 and making it deep into the playoffs, he obviously deserved it.

Well folks, that pretty much does it. I appreciate you all joining me on this fascinating, surreal journey of what technically could happen in 2021 for the Falcons. Although unrealistic at times, the game thinks the Falcons will at minimum be a playoff contender this year. I’m not sure I believe that quite yet, but I will happily take all of the optimism I can get.

Madden 22 is available now on PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X and Series S, Google Stadia, and Microsoft Windows.