The Falcons have one of their toughest games of the season ahead of them as they travel to Tampa Bay to take on the world champion Buccaneers. On top of that, they’re facing a Bucs team that has had 3 extra days of rest on account of them having last played on a Thursday. If you’re an Atlanta fan, things certainly look stacked against your team. Here’s where both teams stand heading into the Sunday afternoon matchup.
The Falcons may not have many advantages over the Buccaneers, but health may be one of them. While Atlanta has a few players out for an extended period of time, such as Josh Andrews, Kendall Sheffield and Matt Gono, they are going into this game with only one player on the injury report: WR Frank Darby. He’s already been ruled out for the game, though it was already likely he’d not be active for the contest on Sunday. Otherwise, this team is relatively healthy going into week 2.
With as deep as this Tampa Bay team is, the cornerback position was not particularly well stocked. Starting CB Sean Murphy-Bunting was already placed on IR with an elbow injury he suffered in week 1, though the injury is not as severe as initially thought. However, their other starting CB - Carlton Davis - was unexpectedly added to the injury list on Friday and is now considered questionable for the game. If he does miss the game, the Bucs will be missing both starting corners. Meanwhile, Bucs players WR Antonio Brown, LB Jason Pierre-Paul, TE Rob Gronkowski and DT Ndamukong Suh all stayed out on Friday for veteran rest and are expected to play.
Since the Falcons were the only team in the NFC South not to win in week 1, they sit alone at the bottom of the division at 0-1. Tampa Bay is currently tied with the Saints and Panthers atop the division.