The Falcons are a beneficiary of Sean Payton’s departure, could Tom Brady be next?

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The Falcons haven’t made a single significant offseason decision yet. The statuses of Matt Ryan, Grady Jarrett, Calvin Ridley, Deion Jones, Foye Oluokun, Cordarrelle Patterson, among others, are the situations to monitor because they will have profound effects on what the team looks like in 2022.

Atlanta hasn’t yet begun the roster-building necessary to field a playoff-caliber squad until these decisions are made, but they’re already winning the offseason race.

Sean Payton is stepping down as the Saints head coach, which immediately makes the Falcons better inside the division, given New Orleans’ dire cap and cloudy quarterback situations.

He led the Saints for 15 seasons, finishing with a 152-89 regular-season record, nine playoff appearances, and as a Super Bowl XLIV champion. Before Payton, the franchise was the laughing stock of the NFL. He immediately made them competitive in the NFC South, and Falcons fans, in particular, are the happiest people to see him gone.

Payton has absolutely dominated Atlanta during his tenure. Overall, he finished with a 21-9 record against the Falcons, with his last victory as the Saints head coach coming against Atlanta in the regular-season finale.

The Saints will once again look to hire a head coach and find a franchise quarterback to begin this next era in the boot. There’s undoubtedly uncertainty regarding the franchise, which only benefits the Falcons, but they could be in line to benefit even more…

Tom Brady is also uncertain about returning to the division. Brady referenced his family as deserving of having their father/husband in their lives, which is commendable; however, it is hard to ignore the Falcons are direct beneficiaries of Brady and Payton’s departures from the division.

The NFC South may turn into the AFC South if Brady does retire, but the Falcons stand to reap the rewards of the two legends’ exits. With the Panthers struggling to end last season and their decision to bring in Ben McAdoo as offensive coordinator, the Falcons have a real chance of securing their first divisional title since 2016.

Of course, this possibility is operating under the assumption that Brady retires. If the GOAT returns for his third season with Tampa Bay, the Falcons will once again be competing for second place.



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