Monday, January 14, 2013
Statistical superlatives on the Falcons
By Pat Yasinskas
Let’s take a by-the-numbers look back at Atlanta Falcons' 30-28 playoff victory against Seattle with some help from ESPN Stats & Information and the Falcons’ media relations department.
- The first time Matt Ryan faced a blitz by a Seattle defensive back, it led to his first-quarter interception. After that, the Seahawks blitzed a defensive back eight times. On those plays, Ryan completed 7 of 8 passes for 111 yards, six first downs and a touchdown.
- The Falcons had the second-fewest rushing yards after contact in the NFC during the regular season. But Sunday was a different story. The Falcons had 88 rush yards after contact, including 35 on a first-quarter run by Jacquizz Rodgers.
- With the running game clicking, Ryan was particularly good on play-action passing. He completed 8 of 12 attempts for 87 yards and three touchdowns off play action.
- Ryan’s average target depth was 12.1 yards downfield, the highest single-game average of his career.
- Ryan led the 22nd game-winning drive of his career in overtime or the fourth quarter. That’s the most game-winning drives by any quarterback in his first five seasons since 1966.
- Ryan’s three touchdowns tied the franchise record of Chris Miller and Chris Chandler for touchdown passes in a postseason game. Ryan now has the franchise record with six career postseason touchdown passes.
- Including the postseason, Ryan now has a 34-6 career record at home.
- Matt Bryant kicked a 49-yard game-winning field goal. Since joining the Falcons in 2009, Bryant has converted 10 of 11 attempts of 49 yards or longer. Bryant has kicked six game-winning field goals since joining the Falcons.
- In his career, Bryant has made 17 of 18 go-ahead or game-tying field-goal attempts in the final two minutes of the fourth quarter or in overtime. That's 94 percent, the best rate by any kicker with at least 15 attempts in those situations since the AFL-NFL merger.
- Tight end Tony Gonzalez got the first playoff win of his career. Gonzalez also caught the third postseason touchdown of his career.
- Running back Michael Turner rushed for 98 yards, the highest postseason total of his career.
- Rodgers had a 45-yard run. That’s the third-longest postseason run in franchise history. Only Warrick Dunn (62 yards) and Michael Vick (47 yards) have had longer runs in the playoffs.
- Atlanta’s 417 total yards of offense were the second-highest total in franchise history. The record (427 yards) was set in the NFC Championship Game against Minnesota in the 1998 season.
- The Atlanta defense limited Seattle running back Marshawn Lynch to 46 yards on 16 carries (a 2.9-yard average).
- Since the arrival of coach Mike Smith in 2008, the Falcons have posted a 57-27 record, including the postseason. That’s a .679 winning percentage. In that same time frame, only New England (.729) has a better winning percentage.