Published: Tue, January 24, 2017
Research | By Francis Brooks

What winning the NFC title game means for Atlanta

What winning the NFC title game means for Atlanta

Green Bay has listed three receivers as questionable for the Falcons game, including starters Jordy Nelson and Davante Adams. Kid Reporters Alan Cole, who lives in Georgia, and Wilson von Bohlen, who lives in Wisconsin, discussed the matchup. That's nine wins in 10 games. Atlanta has covered four of its last five, the exception being in Week 17 when the Falcons eased up on the Saints in a 38-32 win. He's one-and-three in these games now. He blazed down the middle of the field, shook off LaDarius Gunter's attempt to grab him on a cut toward the sideline, hauled in the pass from Ryan, broke Gunter's diving attempt at tackle, and defiantly knocked away Damarious Randall's with a brutal stiff-arm. If Falcons GM Tom Dimitroff held any feelings similar to Accorsi about the second seed's ability to deal with Rodgers' heat that produced 21 touchdowns against one interception during the winning streak, defense-minded head coach Dan Quinn probably uttered something similar to Fox.

But there is a lot more money on the line for the Falcons this time because the team is moving into Mercedes-Benz Stadium next season. I love Green Bay. Julius Peppers, who just turned 37, has only two sacks in his last six games. Forty of the 58 current Packers have postseason experience.

Two weeks later, the Packers would finally bring the Lombardi Trophy back to Green Bay with a 35-21 victory over the New England Patriots in Super Bowl XXXI in the Louisiana Superdome at New Orleans.

It's hosted more than two decades of SEC Championship games, Peach Bowls and GHSA football playoffs, three NCAA men's Final Fours (and one women's), ACC and SEC basketball tournaments, two Super Bowls and an Olympics.

So, if the opponent might have trouble controlling the clock, which would make it tough for it to keep Atlanta's offense off the field, and then seem to have difficulty containing Atlanta's high-powered offense with a weak defensive backfield, you'd think the Falcons would be heavy favorites, right?

Matt Ryan, victor at least of the popular vote for league MVP after a stellar regular season, did not let the defense's effort go to waste by leading the Falcons to touchdowns on all but three of their nine possessions, and one of those misses resulted in a field goal.

A fourth-round pick out of Eastern Michigan in 2009, Lang has developed a deep connection with the team and community in his eight seasons in Green Bay. Atlanta plays in a dome.

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Aaron Rodgers gave us plenty of reason to believe in the supernatural over the last two months.

Ryan entered these playoffs 1-4 in his career in the postseason, leading to a reputation as a big-stats quarterback who faltered against the best competition.

Matt Ryan looked like Aaron Rodgers had looked in the past few weeks, looking unstoppable and shredding the Packers' secondary like swiss cheese. "I saw the coverage", Jones said.

Alan: Rodgers can do some unbelievable things at the end of games, but he can't do anything without the ball.

Aaron Rodgers and the Packers came right back, moving quickly down the field in what was expected to be a back-and-forth shootout.

While both are slashing runners who will not go down on first contact, they are also excellent receivers who can get to the second level and make big plays. If the Falcons can effectively run the ball and win the time of possession battle, they will neutralize what Rodgers can do. Limiting a Green Bay offense to zero points through the game's first 36 minutes was a spellbinding accomplishment. Neither has sniffed putting together a season as good as what Ryan is now doing. First up, the NFC Championship, which kicked off mid-afternoon, with the Green Bay Packers visiting the Atlanta Falcons.

The Packers are a clutch team.

Atlanta could not have scripted this better, with an unforgettable finale in the Falcons' home of 25 years. The Packers also have many clutch players, such as Rodgers and Crosby.

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