The Atlanta Falcons headed into their Week 2 match-up against the Carolina Panthers with a lot on the line. Not only did they lose Deion Jones, Keanu Neal, and Devonta Freeman the week prior, the Dirty Birds were facing a very tough Carolina Panthers defense – just one week after struggling on offense against the Philadelphia Eagles.
To some fans and most of the national media, the sky was falling for Atlanta; however, to these resilient Falcons, they saw it as another opportunity to soar through adversity.
Running back, Tevin Coleman, was one of the many Falcons on Sunday afternoon who came through for Dan Quinn. With starting running back, Devonta Freeman, sidelined with a knee injury, the entire city was hoping Coleman could come through with a monstrous showing.
Needless to say, the former Indiana Hoosiers standout had an incredible afternoon, finishing with 107 rushing yards on only 16 carries. To save you the math, that’s a nifty 6.7 yards per carry average for the number-two back. Add in his 4 receptions for 18 yards, and you’ll quickly understand why Coleman gave Carolina all kinds of problems on Sunday.
If there’s one thing I admire about Dan Quinn’s teams, it’s that he always has a few different guys step-up when their team needs them the most. On a weekend when the Falcons needed someone to dominate, Coleman stepped-up to the plate and stuck it to the Panthers defense from start-to-finish. Of course, none of it was possible without a bounce-back performance from the Falcons offensive line that also lost one of it’s key members in Sunday’s game
Hopefully, Andy Levitre’s elbow injury turns out to be nothing serious. God knows, the Falcons cannot afford to lose another starter this early in the season. However, if Levitre is out for a significant period of time, you know it will be business as usual for Atlanta.
The “next man up” motto is real under Dan Quinn. Freeman will likely miss another weekend, but I have full confidence in Coleman’s ability to have another dynamic outing against a vulnerable New Orleans Saints defense in Week 3.