Atlanta Falcons: Falcon’s Week 16 Preview and Prediction


Can the Atlanta Falcons keep rolling in week 16 against the Carolina Panthers?

The Atlanta Falcons are heading into week 16 with high playoff hopes and are set to play a tough division opponent in the Carolina Panthers. The Panthers have had a rough season on both sides of the ball. The defense has taken a big step back this season and the offense has suffered from a step back in Cam Newton’s level of play.

Despite their struggles the Panther’s defense is improving, their young secondary has taken steps forward but will still have problems stopping a Falcon’s passing attack that will get a boost with Julio Jones returning to the starting lineup.

Matt Ryan and the Falcons offense had one of their best games this season in the Panthers and Falcons first match-up.   The Falcons beat the Panthers 48-33, Julio Jones hauled in over 300 yards receiving and Matt Ryan had a season high 503 yards passing.  While it is doubtful that they will be able to match either of these numbers from their first match-up considering the improvement of the Panther’s defense there are still holes in the secondary that Julio Jones and the Falcons should exploit  often on Saturday.

The problem for the Falcons will be the fact that they will be unable to stop the Panther’s now  healthy run game. Along with Cam Newton’s improved play the Panthers will keep this game much closer than the first match-up.

It will come down to the Panther’s secondary and their ability to slow down Julio Jones. If they can force the Falcons to run the ball they will have an easy time staying in the game and a good chance to pull this one out. Coming off of an injury Julio Jones may be slow to start and that should be enough to allow the Panthers to get an early start, the Carolina Panthers will play spoiler and pull this one out 35-31.

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Kick-off is scheduled for 1:00 Saturday on FOX