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Falcons snap counts from a triumph over the 49ers

Atlanta found some new faces to lean on Sunday.

San Francisco 49ers v Atlanta Falcons Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

Another Sunday, another strong performance from Atlanta, this time in all three phases and for most of four quarters. That led to an impressive win, but who helped key that performance?

As is our custom, we turn to the snap counts for a closer look at who played Sunday and how the team divvied up their snaps.


Marcus Mariota: 58

Jake Matthews: 58

Elijah Wilkinson: 58

Drew Dalman: 58

Chris Lindstrom: 58

Kaleb McGary: 58

Olamide Zaccheaus: 43

Parker Hesse: 41

Drake London: 39

Tyler Allgeier: 33

Kyle Pitts: 33

Keith Smith: 28

Caleb Huntley: 20

MyCole Pruitt: 16

Bryan Edwards: 12

Damiere Byrd: 11

Avery Williams: 7

KhaDarel Hodge: 7

The most essential men on this offense besides the five making up the offensive line at the moment might be Parker Hesse and Olamide Zaccheaus. As ESPN’s Mike Rothstein noted, the duo is heavily relied upon for their run blocking abilities, especially Hesse, and Zaccheaus is putting in consistently terrific work as a receiver. OZ is now second on the team in receptions and yards and is tied for the team lead in touchdowns, working as a hyper-efficient and trusted option for Marcus Mariota, and will continue to lead the team in snaps so long as he’s this effective. It has been a true breakout year for him.

The news isn’t so good for other receivers on the depth chart. With London and OZ playing huge roles and the team passing under 20 times per game of late, there isn’t the volume to support additional receivers. Edwards, Byrd, and Hodge are active but playing relatively small roles and getting a relatively small number of snaps, and that likely won’t change with Mariota under center given that the team is hellbent on having him throw as few passes as possible to maximize the ground game and his efficiency. With MyCole Pruitt also pushing for a roster spot and potentially a role, we just might not see much of either player the rest of the way unless there’s a change at quarterback or injuries on the depth chart.

Oh, and more on Pruitt. The veteran tight end is an excellent blocker and showed he can be a capable receiver on Sunday, reeling in Mariota’s touchdown pass with a nice grab. Given that Franks and Firkser have done little to this point to show that they should be prominent pieces of the offense, Pruitt probably deserves a longer look.

Finally, Allgeier continues to be the lead back, but that’s primarily owing to his pass protection abilities. He and Huntley are splitting carries pretty evenly thus far, and that will likely continue until Damien Williams and Cordarrelle Patterson return to shake things up.


Troy Andersen: 60

Richie Grant: 60

Jaylinn Hawkins: 60

Rashaan Evans: 60

Arnold Ebiketie: 49

Lorenzo Carter: 49

Grady Jarrett: 48

Casey Hawyward: 47

Ta’Quon Graham: 40

Darren Hall: 38

Isaiah Oliver: 30

A.J. Terrell: 26

Abdullah Anderson: 23

Timothy Horne: 15

Matt Dickerson: 12

DeAngelo Malone: 11

Dee Alford: 11

Quinton Bell: 10

Mike Ford: 7

Nate Landman: 3

Dean Marlowe: 1

Injury drove a lot of decisions here. Obviously Andersen playing the full game was keyed by Mykal Walker missing the game, and Darren Hall wound up stepping in and playing a major role because A.J. Terrell was out. Alford and Ford stepped in owing to injuries to Hayward and Oliver, the latter of whom was making his triumphant return after missing most of the 2021 season and the start of the 2022 season. With Adetokunbo Ogundeji out, Ebiketie dominated snaps, as well.

All of those guys played pretty well, which is a great note. That’s especially true for Hall, who might have to step into the starting lineup over the long haul with indications that the team is worried about Hayward’s injury potentially being a long-term one.

Getting Oliver back—and having him make a huge play on that half-ending interception—was fantastic. He looked like he didn’t have all that much rust to knock off, and assuming the injury he suffered at the end of the game Sunday doesn’t linger, he should be locked in as the team’s nickel for the foreseeable future. As good as Alford has been in his opportunities, Oliver has proven to be a great fit for what Dean Pees is looking for at the nickel owing to his physicality, and that continued Sunday.

The really intriguing thing here, to me, is that the Falcons are doing pretty good work up front with a makeshift defensive line outside of Jarrett and Graham. Anderson has continued to play pretty well, Horne had perhaps his best game yet, and Dickerson is at least a solid reserve. This is an area the Falcons need to improve in the offseason, but at least for the moment, they’re getting the job done.

Finally, Nate Landman continues to play over Nick Kwiatkoski on defense, however sparingly. That still bodes well for the undrafted free agent’s future.

Special Teams

Mike Ford: 18

Dean Marlowe: 18

Avery Williams: 18

Keith Smith: 18

Bradley Pinion: 14

Nick Kwiatkoski: 14

Quinton Bell: 13

KhaDarel Hodge: 13

Parker Hesse: 12

DeAngelo Malone: 10

Troy Andersen: 9

Richie Grant: 9

Liam McCullough: 9

Darren Hall: 8

Isaiah Oliver: 7

Feleipe Franks: 6

Jaylinn Hawkins: 4

Kaleb McGary: 4

Elijah Wilkinson: 4

Jake Matthews: 4

Chris Lindstrom: 4

Germain Ifedi: 4

Matt Hennessy: 4

Colby Gossett: 4

Nate Landman: 3

Olamide Zaccheaus: 3

Ta’Quon Graham: 2

Timothy Horne: 2

Abdullah Anderson: 2

Again, this is a good group, with a long return and a missed tackle on a very game effort by Hodge marring the day for Atlanta. Pinion is punting well, Koo is nails on extra points as you’d expect, and Williams has transformed himself into one of the league’s most electric returners in very short order.

It seems like every week I just give it up for Marquice Williams and move on, and that’s because he and this special teams group have proven to consistently be an asset for the Falcons. Let’s keep it rolling.