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St. Louis Rams look to ground Steven Jackson in uneasy reunion

Atlanta Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan must overcome the challenges of poor tackle play against the St. Louis Rams in Week 2.

Atlanta Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan must overcome the challenges of poor tackle play against the St. Louis Rams in Week 2.

The up-and-coming St. Louis Rams (1-0) travel to the Georgia Dome to face former Rams great Steven Jackson and the Atlanta Falcons (0-1). Kickoff for this game, which will be broadcast on FOX Sports, is at 1:00 p.m. ET.

Last week the Atlanta offensive line struggled mightily against what was thought to be an average New Orleans Saints defensive line, whereas the St. Louis defensive line had a very successful day against the Arizona Cardinals.

How clean Matt Ryan's jersey remains will go a long way toward determining the outcome of this game.

How clean Matt Ryan keeps his jersey will go a long way toward determining the outcome of this game.

After watching the offensive line collapse in the second half, some observers have written the Falcons off, arguing that they lack enough talent at the tackle positions to be a credible Super Bowl contender. Certainly, weaknesses along the line put franchise quarterback Matt Ryan at risk. The problem is that any quick fix will likely remove the deep threat from the game plan, effectively hamstringing what was one of the most potent offenses in the NFL last season.

Rough reunion

Just as they did in Matt Ryan’s rookie year with Michael Turner, the Atlanta Falcons will heavily on running back Steven Jackson to grind out the yards, hoping to open up play action for the occasional deep bomb when opportunity presents itself. In concert with Atlanta’s young defense, this scheme may buy the front office enough time to patch up the offensive line and make it at least serviceable enough for a playoff run.

Rookie cornerbacks

Although it’s hard to make sweeping judgments from one week of action, it would seem that Atlanta now has the defense they have been seeking. They got some penetration up the middle on run plays and put pressure on Saints quarterback Drew Brees. The young corners batted balls away and demonstrated sure tackling. Rookie cornerback Robert Alford snagged the first interception of his career and looks to make a lot more plays as the season wears on.

Rams horns

Atlanta Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan must maintain good pocket awareness if he wants to avoid the pass rush of the St. Louis Rams.

Atlanta Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan must maintain good pocket awareness if he wants to avoid the pass rush of the St. Louis Rams.

St. Louis defensive ends Chris Long and Robert Quinn must be licking their chops after watching last week’s game tape, as offensive tackles Sam Baker and Lamar Holmes were flat out whipped for most of the second half. Quinn recorded three sacks in the Rams’ come-from-behind win.

The front seven will get pressure on Ryan, who will be in for a long day if his line has no answer for the pass rush.

Cornerbacks Cortland Finnegan and Janoris Jenkins are experienced and talented, but they will be going up against wide receiver Julio Jones, who appears to be ready to start after resting this week with a sore knee.

Rejuvenated offensive attack

Fourth-year starter Sam Bradford has had his up and downs, much like any young quarterback in the NFL. He has never had many weapons to work with, other than Steven Jackson and some average wide receivers and tight ends.

Now that he has some real receiving  threats in rookie Tavon Austin and tight end Jared Cook, we may see Bradford finally become the quarterback we all expected to see when he left Oklahoma. Then again, the loss of Jackson leaves St. Louis scrambling to find a rusher who can also be a receiving threat out of the backfield.

The St. Louis secondary will struggle to contain the talented wide receivers of the Atlanta Falcons.

The St. Louis Rams secondary will struggle to contain the talented wide receivers of the Atlanta Falcons.

Prediction

Atlanta has its fair share of problems right now: injuries, poor line play, and in general, looking a little out of sync. Nevertheless, between Julio Jones, tight end Tony Gonzalez, and Steven Jackson, they still have enough talent on offense to complement a defense that usually excels against pocket passers with  average to above-average weapons in the skill positions.

The Rams will make a few plays and keep this game close, but in the end the Falcons have too much firepower to contain and will outlast the Rams.

Final score: Atlanta Falcons 24, St. Louis Rams 16

721 comments
boriboy
boriboy

For the record, i really think ATL is going down hardcore - i think they will lose by 10 points

Childerz...
Childerz...

Game Cube had agood games too..... the Star Wars games were good and so was Picmin  and Eternal Darkness Sanities Requiem. 

natesweet
natesweet moderator

I loved the Star Wars Tie Fighter, XWing games. Something about those flight simulators that was far superior to anything else at the time.

Staffords Erect Nipples
Staffords Erect Nipples

VD stings my Balls6 minutes ago

  From the email I got it sounded like the have 2 new versions comming out.  And the other one has the old processor.  Pretty dumb I say.  Shouldn't call it the new iphone if it has the same shit.

=====

Apple has been doing that for years.

AndrewLeT
AndrewLeT

if any of you guys want to come up to lambeau and crash at my place that's cool.  I have a big back yard just don't mind the snow and dog shit. 

Childerz...
Childerz...

my favorite system though is the N64 thanks to Golden Eye and perfect dark. 

matt_vfalcon32
matt_vfalcon32

what the hell happened to julio, baker, and weatherspoon...how are they listed as questionable? son of a bitch!

falconsriseup19
falconsriseup19

SO, sega genesis is the best system of all-time. just saying

Koosh12684
Koosh12684

@Childerz... Golden Eye might have been the best game of our older childhood.  And this even being on the HORRIBLE N64, worst controller FUCKING EVER.

natesweet
natesweet moderator

@Childerz... I still remember playing Collecovision, Intellivision and the early Atari consoles like it was yesterday. Track and Field. I was so good at that game.

Childerz...
Childerz...

@ethan_fitz01 God damn!! Twisted Metal and Vigilante 8 were two of the greatest games ever!!! 

My top 5 PS 1 Games

1. Twisted Metal

2. Siphon Filter

3. Driver

4. Vigilante 8

5. Crash Banda Koot Racing 

sgunderson17
sgunderson17

@ethan_fitz01 @falconsriseup19 My friend told me there was a code to get her naked in the video game. I spend a solid two hours straight trying to do it over and over again. 

He made it up. fucker.