Atlanta Falcons blog 

Atlanta Falcons blog by the AJC's D. Orlando Ledbetter

COVER 9@9: Secondary to have hands full with Steve Smith, Torrey Smith

  • 9:00 am Wednesday, October 15th, 2014 by D. Orlando Ledbetter

The AJC’s D. Orlando Ledbetter and CineSport’s Brian Clark discuss the causes of the Falcons’ three-game losing streak, and whether Atlanta can end the skid in Baltimore.

(Welcome all! With the NFL becoming more of a passing league, the “Cover 9@9” blog will become all of the rage. You can read it here every Wednesday at 9 a.m. throughout the season. We’ll try to get to everything about the Atlanta Falcons from the Hometown Huddle to who blew that coverage against the Bears. -– D. Orlando Ledbetter)

1. STOPPING THE SMITHS: The Falcons young secondary, which had a tough time with Chicago’s Brandon [More]

FILM REVIEW: Blown coverage on the 74-yard bomb

  • 3:23 pm Tuesday, October 14th, 2014 by D. Orlando Ledbetter

FLOWERY BRANCH – After Falcons coach Mike Smith ripped the media for not knowing the coverage call on the 74-yard pass play, we decided to take a closer look at the play.

“Miscommunication, a mental error, missed leverage or missed tackle lead to explosive plays,” Smith said. “There is a design to every defensive call. Everybody has to be seeing it the same way.

“We were not as nearly as clean as we needed to be. I don’t want to talk about specific plays, nor will I talk about specific players. What you see on tape, unless you know what the play [More]

Texans WR DeAndre Hopkins a big fan of Roddy White, Julio Jones

  • 8:00 am Thursday, August 14th, 2014 by D. Orlando Ledbetter

HOUSTON – Texans wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins, who’s set to enter his second year in the NFL, didn’t want to come off as a drooling fan.

The South Carolina native had a chance to tell Falcons wide receiver Roddy White that he’d been watching him since his days at Alabama-Birmingham. He had a chance to tell Julio Jones that he admires he work.

But Hopkins remained calm and took care of his business.

“Roddy is from South Carolina, so he’s one of the guys that I’ve been watching since he was in college,” said Hopkins, who had 52 catches for 802 yards and [More]

Marvez picks Falcons to finish 9-7 or 10-6

  • 12:19 pm Tuesday, August 5th, 2014 by D. Orlando Ledbetter

FLOWERY BRANCH – Gil Brandt and Alex Marvez of SiriusXM NFL Radio concluded their stay at the Falcons training camp on Monday and then headed up the road to Spartanburg, S.C. to visit the Carolina Panthers.

During the wrap-up of their show they shared with their listeners what they thought about the Falcons.

Here are a couple of highlights followed by the transcript:

THE QUICK HITS

–Marvez believes the Falcons are a 9-7, 10-6 team.

–Marvez and Brandt are worried about the secondary.

–Brandt likes Desmond Trufant. He noted that theTrufants — Desmond, Marcus and Isaiah — are tough in part because their father was a boxer.

–Brandt called Matt [More]

Countdown to camp: Day 8 – Defensive backs

  • 6:00 am Friday, July 18th, 2014 by D. Orlando Ledbetter

FLOWERY BRANCH — The start of the Falcons training camp is eight days away.

We started our countdown by looking at the new assistant coaches Mike Tice, Wade Harman and Bryan Cox and then the special teams unit.

Today, we will look at the defensive backfield, where they’ll be some fierce competition for the starting nickel back and free safety positions.

Here’s our projected depth chart for the defensive backfield.

RCB 21 Desmond Trufant, 28 Javier Arenas, 37 Ricardo Allen,

NB 26 Josh Wilson, 27 Robert McClain, 28 Javier Arenas, 41 Dezmen Southward

LCB 23 Robert Alford, 24 Jordan Mabin, 43 Devonta Glover-Wright

SS 25 William Moore, 36 Kemal Ishmael, [More]

10 quick observations from Falcons open OTAs

  • 12:33 pm Wednesday, May 28th, 2014 by D. Orlando Ledbetter

FLOWERY BRANCH – While the Falcons continue to stress that they’ll be a multiple defensive team, the spent a great deal of time working on their 3-4 alignment during the first open OTA session on Wednesday.

Also, cornerback Desmond Trufant has been switched to left cornerback and Robert Alford lined up at right cornerback. Last season, Asante Samuel played left cornerback before Alford finished the season as the starter.

Generally, the defense appeared ahead of the offense, which is normal for this juncture of the offseason.

Here are 10 quick observations from the session:

1. THE 3-4: Left defensive end Tyson Jackson, nose tackle Paul Soliai, right defensive [More]

Falcons entourage set to leave for NFL combine

  • 6:00 am Tuesday, February 18th, 2014 by D. Orlando Ledbetter

Falcons general manager Thomas Dimitroff and head coach Mike Smith will head up the team’s entourage that’s headed to the 2014 NFL Scouting Combine, which starts on Wednesday and runs through Tuesday, Feb. 25.

More than 300 players are set to participate in the 2014 NFL Scouting Combine Feb. 19-25 at Lucas Oil Stadium. There’s a group of 24 players with Georgia connections who were invited to the combine. 

The players well start to arrive on Wednesday for medical exams, psychological testing and interviews with teams.

They will start working out on Saturday.

The Saturday group – Placekickers, special teamers, offensive linemen and tight [More]

Falcons CB Trufant named to PFWA All-Rookie team

  • 1:28 pm Tuesday, January 14th, 2014 by D. Orlando Ledbetter

Falcons cornerback Desmond Trufant, the 22nd player taken overall in the 2013 NFL draft, was named to the Pro Football Writers of America All-Rookie team today.

Trufant, 6-0, 190 pounds, finished his rookie season with 73 total tackles (57 solo), two interceptions, one forced fumble, and one fumble recovery.

Trufant’s 17 passes defensed ranked tied for 10th in the NFL and set a franchise rookie record, topping Darnell Walker’s 13 pass breakups in 1993.

Trufant started all 16 games as a rookie and according to Stats LLC., Trufant allowed a 48.3 completion percentage on passes thrown his way.

Green Bay Packers running back Eddie Lacy, [More]