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Falcons favored by 3.5 points at home against Vikings

On the heels of the loss against Tennessee, Atlanta opens as slight favorites at The Benz.

Atlanta Falcons v Tennessee Titans Photo by Justin Ford/Getty Images

The Falcons’ secondary was dismantled by rookie quarterback Will Levis in his first start, surrendering 238 yards and four touchdowns in his first NFL start. Despite that, Atlanta enter Sunday’s game against the Vikings as slight 3.5-point favorites, per DraftKings Sportsbook. They currently sit at -180 in the moneyline.

The Vikings, of course, will be without starting quarterback Kirk Cousins who suffered an Achilles injury against the Packers. His replacement? Another rookie quarterback in Jaren Hall, who will also be making his first NFL start.

Are the Falcons about to make another rookie look like Dan Marino?

Getting torched by Levis was pain enough, but he was a highly touted prospect, selected in the second round of the 2023 NFL Draft. Hall was snagged by the Vikes in that same draft, hearing his name called in the fifth round.

Should the secondary encounter another meltdown to a rookie in his first start, the pitchforks might be out at Mercedes-Benz Stadium.

Under Kirk Cousins, the Vikings possessed one of the league’s most potent passing attacks, ranking second in the NFL in passing yards (2,354) and passing touchdowns (18). The offense will be without its top playmaker, so it’s up to the Falcons to adjust and prevent the possibility of getting embarrassed by another rookie backup.