Tuesday, October 8, 2013
Locker Room Buzz: Atlanta Falcons
By Vaughn McClure
Observed in the locker room after the Atlanta Falcons' 30-28 loss to the New York Jets on Monday:
Keeping his calm: Quarterback Matt Ryan had somewhat of a blank stare on his face as he dashed through the locker room for his postgame press conference. When he stepped to the podium, he was asked immediately about the offense’s inability to punch it in on fourth-and-goal from the 1 before halftime. "I think everybody was ready to go," Ryan said. "That would have been a big score from us before the half. ... When you have those chances, you’ve got to punch it in." Head coach Mike Smith admitted in hindsight, maybe a field goal would have been a better option.
Caught off guard: Safety William Moore tried to explain why the defense imploded on the Jets’ final drive, as rookie quarterback Geno Smith marched his team into field-goal range in seven plays, capped by Nick Folk's 43-yard game-winner: "There were a few situations where they started fast-balling us," Moore said. "It’s hard to get the personnel in. It’s hard to do stuff. It was because didn’t nobody know what they were doing. It was because they were hurrying up, and they took advantage of some of the looks that we had."
Walking wounded: Neither Roddy White nor Jason Snelling were at their lockers after the game. They were probably in the training room after leaving the game with injuries. White suffered a hamstring injury, while Snelling sustained a concussion. "I think it is difficult to see guys get nicked up,’’ Ryan said. "Thought our guys that came in stepped up and did a great job."
Rush to judgment: The Falcons sacked Smith four times, led by Osi Umenyiora with two. However, they needed more pressure on Smith during the final drive. Corey Peters had a sack, too, but downplayed the four sacks. "Honestly when you lose a game, especially the way we did ... the defense had an opportunity to be on the field at the end of the game. We’ve got to come up with a stop, keep them out of field-goal range,’’ Peters said. "At least right now, everything’s kind of a wash. We didn’t play well enough to win. I’m sure after we get to the film, we can find some positives in it. But right now, it’s really all bad."