The Falcons had a hot start, coming off an improbable victory over the Buccaneers in Tampa Bay, marking Desmond Ridder’s first road win. Since then, it’s been a muddy mess.
Ridder, Arthur Smith, and the offense have floundered. Atlanta has lost to Will Levis making his NFL debut and Josh Dobbs in his Viking debut, which he made less than a week after being acquired via trade. Dobbs didn’t even know his teammates’ names or the snap cadence, let alone the playbook.
It was a demoralizing defeat, and the club still doesn’t have an answer at quarterback. Taylor Heinicke got the first start of his Falcons career, and it went about how I expected. He pushed the ball down the field more than Ridder, producing more big plays, but it came at a cost. He made similarly reckless throws.
But Arthur Smith has seemingly already waved the flag on Ridder, right? Wrong. During Tuesday’s press conference, the Falcons head coach said they’d reassess the position during the bye week following the Cardinals game.
This team doesn’t have a direction, nor a signal caller — both of which fall at the feet of Arthur Smith. It’s prompted some knee-jerky fans to call for his job, which I disagree with. Sure, his seat should be getting warm, but making sweeping decisions in the middle of the season with the playoffs still in reach would be asinine.
That’s not to say he should have 100% job security. But if we look at Arthur Blank’s M.O., it’s to hold onto coaches too long, not be ahead of the curve. Vegas seemingly agrees. Smith isn’t even in their top seven for the next coach to be fired, behind Sean McVay, Brian Daboll, and Matt LaFleur, who aren’t anywhere close to being canned.
Odds Of Next NFL Coach Fired
It’s a bit surprising considering the job he’s done thus far, but then again, considering the Falcons owner, it’s not a surprise. Arthur Blank hung on to Dan Quinn and Mike Smith for too long. What makes fans think he won’t do the same with Arthur Smith, and who is to say Smith still can’t lead the Falcons to the postseason?
Photographer: Jeff Robinson/Icon Sportswire