As if the jokes couldn’t grow louder and more frequent about the Falcons, Taylor Heinicke had to liken Atlanta’s Week 10 tilt in Arizona against the Cardinals to a Super Bowl.
Taylor Heinicke says it’s like a Super Bowl this week for us, trying to get a win and feel good going into the bye week. pic.twitter.com/5K9owkjgfI
— Kelly Price (@thekellyprice) November 8, 2023
Heinicke wasn’t around for the 2016 Super Bowl collapse, but the wounds are still fresh for some fans. Describing it as a must-win game would’ve done just fine, and he’s correct, but it’s a little embarrassing that a matchup against the 1-8 Cardinals is of the must-win variety.
Momentum going into the bye week is invaluable, and that’s especially true for the Falcons this particular season. First and foremost, Arthur Smith is taking the off week to mull over the quarterback situation. It’s assumed whoever Smith rolls with will be the starter for the rest of the season, so this Cardinals game is a big deal for the Falcons and Taylor Heinicke.
Secondly, this isn’t a normal bye week. The following game will be the most important one to date as the Falcons host the Saints in Atlanta. Currently, New Orleans sits atop the NFC South, but whoever wins that Week 12 contest will be in the driver’s seat of the division.
Thirdly, the Falcons haven’t won a game since their road victory over the Buccaneers. To prevent a three-game slide is paramount for their playoff hopes. Atlanta has a lot on the line this week, but let’s not reference the Super Bowl, Taylor Heinicke.
It’s as close to a must-win situation as one could get in the middle of the season and could go a long way in the club’s goal of reaching the postseason, but spare Falcons fans the embarrassment of describing this particular matchup as a Super Bowl.
Photographer: Bryan Lynn/Icon Sportswire