The Falcons had their chance to claim a big victory in a hostile environment, however they weren’t able to close it out.
Dan Quinn’s team gained momentum throughout the second half, as the offense finally came to their senses and Seattle’s offense was stymied, particularly in the third quarter.
However, one last momentum shift on a Seattle Seahawks’ interception in conjunction with a questionable no-call on what was debatably a pass interference on a pass intended for Julio Jones cost the Falcons their second narrow loss of the season to Seattle, 26-24
Matt Ryan: Falcons’ quarterback was the team’s leader in their narrow loss, as his efforts kept the Falcons in the game. After getting pummeled by the Seahawks’ defense in the first half and being given little time to find open playmakers, Ryan struggled to find success and Kyle Shanahan’s offense was stagnant. However, that changed in the second half as the Falcons’ offense was immediately in a rhythm. Atlanta scored on the opening drive of the game’s final thirty minutes as Ryan found Mr. Dependable, Julio Jones, on a 36-yard pass. From that point on, the offense went from being stymied to being synergized, and the veteran signal caller finished 27-42 for 335 yards, 3 touchdowns and an interception.
Julio Jones: Another day and another mention of Falcons’ wide receiver Julio Jones. By the pattern of his season to this point, Jones was due for a big game and he was an integral part of the Falcons win on Sunday. The 6-foot-3, 220-pound playmaker finished with 7 receptions for 139 yards and a touchdown. Jones also sent the Seahawks’ secondary into a frenzy as one of his wide open receptions went for a score and Seattle’s leading defensive back Richard Sherman displayed true frustration due to the success of one of the league’s best receivers. However, a pass drop late in the fourth quarter proved to be costly as an interception by Earl Thomas was costly.
Jimmy Graham: The Falcons should be happy that they no longer have to face tight end Jimmy Graham twice a year, formerly with the New Orleans Saints. Atlanta truly had no answer for the 6-foot-8 offensive weapon, as has been the case throughout the past few seasons. Graham finished as Seattle’s leading receiver, with six receptions for 89 yards.
Cliff Avril: Matt Ryan could not get into a rhythm in the first half as Seattle’s pass rush was scintillating throughout the first thirty minutes, and a lot of that had to do with the efforts of defensive end Cliff Avril. The Seattle defender finished with four total tackles, two sacks, a tackle for loss and two quarterback pressures.
The turning point occurred late in the fourth quarter as the momentum shifted to Seattle’s side one final time. After a dominant first half by the Seahawks, the momentum had shifted to Atlanta’s side for a majority of the second half, however a late interception off of the hands of Falcons’ star wideout Jones changed that. The pass eventually ended up in the hands of the opposition, which led to a Seattle field goal and cost Atlanta the game.
Atlanta heads back home after splitting the two-game West Coast road trip to Denver and Seattle. The San Diego Chargers come to town next Sunday, October 29. The game will be televised on FOX at 4:05p.m.