By Shawn Lealos
The Atlanta Falcons drafted Matt Ryan again in 2008 and he led them straight to the playoffs. Nevertheless, one thing occurred within the years that adopted and the Falcons misplaced their momentum. By the point they made the playoffs once more this yr, that they had missed the postseason for 3 straight years. Modifications wanted to be made to get them again to the highest, and every little thing lastly got here collectively in 2016, sending the Falcons to their second Tremendous Bowl look in franchise historical past.
Here’s a take a look at the Atlanta Falcons’ roster strikes that helped them make it again to the playoffs.
Atlanta Falcons Signal Dan Quinn
The primary transfer that introduced the Falcons again to respectability was hiring a brand new head coach earlier than the 2015 NFL season. Mike Smith’s first season as head coach was additionally Matt Ryan’s first yr with the group. He rode Ryan to success early, however began to lose gamers and missed the playoffs in two straight seasons. After main the Seattle Seahawks protection to 2 straight Tremendous Bowl appearances as their coordinator, Quinn acquired his first head teaching job with the Falcons and commenced to make modifications.
Atlanta Falcons Signal Kyle Shanahan
The subsequent largest step was altering who was calling performs on offense. That man was Kyle Shanahan, the son of legendary head coach Mike Shanahan, who had coached at Houston, Washington and Cleveland. In Atlanta, every thing clicked and he helped flip Matt Ryan into an MVP-candidate with the second-ranked offense of 2016. The Tremendous Bowl might be Shanahan’s ultimate recreation with Atlanta, because the San Francisco 49ers will reportedly rent him as their head coach for the 2017 NFL season.
Devonta Freeman – 4th Spherical Draft Decide, 2014
The ultimate draft for Mike Smith produced one of many prime weapons that the Atlanta Falcons had on their group this season. Devonta Freeman was a fourth-spherical draft decide and has paid off tremendously. In 2016, he loved his second straight 1,000-yard season and stays one of many prime receivers as properly. During the last two seasons, Freeman has averaged 1,070 dashing yards, 520 receiving yards and thirteen.5 touchdowns a season. In 2015, the Falcons additionally added Tevin Coleman within the third spherical and used a two-headed dashing assault.
Vic Beasley – 1st Spherical Draft Decide, 2015
With Quinn as a defensive coach, he appeared to repair that aspect of the ball first. The No. 1 draft decide was linebacker Vic Beasley. After performing like a rookie in 2015, with 4 sacks and 26 tackles, Beasley turned the chief of this…