The Atlanta Falcons offense faces a tough task on their opening game of the season. Playing in Philadelphia is no easy task, but the Falcons have to get some revenge Thursday. Matt Ryan and the offensive line will have their hands full this game. The Philadelphia defensive line is scary good. They signed former pro bowler, and Super Bowl champion Micheal Bennett this offseason. On paper, the Falcons may look like they will have a hard time, but I’m here to tell you otherwise. The Atlanta Falcons will win 27-17 and I will tell you how.
The Falcons offense will have a tough time running the ball. The Eagles front seven is legitimately great. Led by Flecher Cox who is an animal, Chris long is solid, and Derek Barnett is a stud. Barnett will be looking to make a name for himself this season. This game will be won and lost in the trenches, and the Falcons offense will be ready to put up points.
Seven catches 115 yards & one touchdown. You can pencil that in for Julio Jones Thursday. The Eagles just don’t have anyone that can cover this beast. Jones will make plays all over the field Thursday night. Offensive coordinator Steve Sarkisian would like to utilize Jones a lot this season, especially in the red zone. Don’t be surprised if he scores in the red zone Thursday. Julio Jones lit the Eagles up in the playoffs last year with nine catches & 101 yards. Versus the Philadelphia Eagles in his career, Jones has torched them for 529 yards and four touchdowns. Jones will continue to do what he always does versus the Eagles. I know Julio will come out ready to put on a show in this opening game.
Austin Hooper didn’t do much of anything last year in the playoffs versus the Eagles. One reception for three yards. This year will be different. Hooper will have a solid game for the Falcons, most likely finishing with 60+ yards on five catches with one touchdown. The Eagles will leave Hooper one on one with linebackers the whole night and the offseason work with Matt Ryan will show. He will be able to get open underneath and will have some run after the catch opportunities. Hooper will have to play big, and when he plays big the offense goes from good to great.
Matt Ryan is going to light the Eagles up. Ryan has passed for 4,000 yards seven straight seasons. He has pinpoint accuracy, and in recent years he is running for first downs or touchdowns if its there. Ryan is in his prime and on the same page with all his weapons. I don’t think the Falcons run game will be any good versus the front seven of the Eagles, but I do think the underneath passes will be there for Matt Ryan all night. He will have to take what the defense is giving, and that’s what he’s been doing consistently now for two years. Ryan will have to dump it to his running backs this game, so don’t be surprised if Devontae Freeman or Tevin Coleman has a receiving touchdown.
Matt Ryan will put on a show Thursday, with his poise and calmness. He won’t always have a clean pocket to throw from but he will make plays. Matt Ryan was called overrated by Jalen Ramsey, and I know he’s not the only player that feels that way about Ryan. Coming home to his hometown I know Matt will show up and show out looking to prove the doubters wrong.