The AJC’s D. Orlando Ledbetter and Noah Coslov talk about the Falcons two-week trip out west, the impact of losing LB Sean Weatherspoon and how to attack Denver’s vaunted defense on Sunday.
September 11, 2016 ATLANTA: Falcons wide receiver Julio Jones takes the field to play the Buccaneers in an NFL football game on Sunday, Sept. 11, 2016, in Atlanta. Curtis Compton /firstname.lastname@example.org
FLOWERY BRANCH — After posting a record-setting 48-33 victory over the Carolina Panthers, the Falcons (3-1) are set to face the undefeated Denver Broncos (4-0) at 4:05 p.m. Sunday in Denver. After playing the Broncos, the Falcons will spend the following week working in Seattle at the University of Washington before facing the Seahawks on Sunday, Oct. 16.
Here are five things to know about the Falcons on Thursday:
LEAD STORY: Running back Tevin Coleman, who has the sickle cell trait is nervously getting ready to play in Denver.
1. No fly zone. Denver linebacker Von Miller said the Broncos secondary is a “no fly zone” for NFL passing attacks. Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan leads the league in passing with 1,473 yards and touchdowns with 11. Here’s what Miller had to say about the Falcons.
2. Shanahan more flexible. Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan opened up about his relationship with offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan. Both realized that they needed to foster a “working and winning” relationship.
3. Deion Jones may be down, too. Falcons linebacker Deion Jones didn’t practice on Wednesday and his injury was changed from a calf injury to an ankle. Linebacker De’Vondre Campbell has been out from Sept. 15 with an ankle sprain. The team would not specify the grade or if it was a high ankle sprain, but Campbell was told he’d be out four to six weeks.
4. Hawk Time. Linebacker A.J. Hawk, a three-time Pro Bowl alternate, was signed on Tuesday. The Falcons are preparing the 10-year NFL veteran to be active against the Broncos. Meet A.J. Hawk!
5. Practice. The Falcons practice at 1:55 p.m. today. Wide receiver Julio Jones will address the media at his locker. We’ll see what he thinks about Denver’s “no fly zone.”
GAME FOUR: Falcons 48, Panthers 33
5 things we learned from the Falcons’ 48-33 win over the Panthers
Tweetcap: Falcons 48, Panthers 33
Old pro Freeney shows new trick with Falcons
Falcons’ rookie Neal holds on vs. Olsen
What Julio Jones had to say after the 48-33 win over the Panthers
What Dan Quinn had to say after the 48-33 win over the Panthers
What Matt Ryan had to say after the 48-33 win over the Panthers
Alford battled; Collins to return
Early view in NFC South isn’t what most expected; Falcons on top
GAME THREE: Falcons 45, Saints 32
5 things we learned from the Falcons’ 45-32 win over the Saints
Falcons, Saints protest with unity circle before game
REPORT CARD: Falcons earned high marks for drubbing Saints
What Dan Quinn had to say after the 45-32 win over the Saints
What Matt Ryan had to say after the 45-32 win over the Saints
What the Falcons had to say after the 45-32 win over the Saints
Keanu Neal makes strong debut for Falcons
Falcons’ Deion Jones runs for glory, not survival, in return home
AJC POWER RANKINGS: Falcons best in NFC South?
GAME TWO: Falcons 35, Raiders 28
5 things we learned from the Falcons’ win over the Raiders
Trufant’s heads-up play saves the day
Tight ends help to power offense
Weatherspoon plays strong in first start since 2013
Matthews, Schraeder held Mack sack-less
JEFF SCHULTZ: Falcons put on offensive show and win
What Matt Ryan had to say after beating the Raiders
What Dan Quinn had to say after the win over the Raiders
GAME ONE: Buccaneers 31, Falcons 24
5 things we learned from the Falcons’ loss to the Bucs
No sacks for new-look Falcons pass rush
Julio Jones not worried about his ankle injury
Falcons have a case of the “no-huddle” blues
REPORT CARD: Falcons can’t ‘gift’ opponents 17 points
FILM REVIEW: Beasley missing in action
AJC’S NFL POWER RANKINGS: Where are the Falcons?
Hageman charged is domestic violence case