The 2016-2017 Atlanta Falcons finished as Super Bowl LI runners-up in heartbreaking fashion by blowing a 25 point second half lead. Is it time for fans to move on?
February 5th, 2017 is a day that will live in historical infamy for the City of Atlanta and her teams’ sports fans. There are dates in history that conjure images of loss, defeat, and suffering. Everyone knows those dates by heart. Like those other dates, you don’t have to explain why 02/05/2017 matters. It explains itself. 02/05/2017 represents the futile falter of our Atlanta Falcons in Super Bowl 51, and with it all futile failures of our past.
More from ATL All Day
- Atlanta Braves: Felix Has Already Shown Enough to Win a Rotation Spot
- Atlanta Braves Implode Late To Phillies, Cole Hamels Remains Sidelined
- Kyle Wright Shines As Folty Struggles In Atlanta Braves Loss To Red Sox
- Atlanta Hawks Sweep Back-to-Back Games Over Weekend
- Atlanta Braves: Grapefruit League Play Check Up
Consequently, and rightfully so, fans haven’t moved on. Like a recent heart-wrenching relationship break-up, with all of your friends telling you to “move on” and “You’ll be fine”, Falcons’ fans can’t move on and don’t know that we’ll be fine. The days in the city after that loss felt funereal. A pall partitioned the “Capitol of the South” unlike we’ve seen before. Folks quietly murmured over meals, with silverware quietly clinking, the understanding hanging in the dark air that these chances come but once in a lifetime.
Time, however, ticks, and with the passing seconds, hours, days, weeks, and coming months, NFL Draft day looms. April 27, 2017 is the next date that presents itself to fans for any kind of hope and solace. Yes, it is true that magician of an Offensive Coordinator who couldn’t wave his wand to run the ball, when all things screamed RUN THE BALL, is now gone, with his replacement in place. That offers hope. Yes, a young defense will grow up in their 2nd year in the league in 2017-2018. That offers hope. But, April 27, 2017 is the next “save the date” for forlorn Falcons fans.
If Coach Quinn and company can replicate their draft day success in 2017, that they had in 2016, bright skies may shine yet in Atlanta. It was simply amazing that Atlanta’s defense played the way they did with that many rookies featured. Frankly, it’s unheard of. If Atlanta supplants and supplies those needed pieces on defense, and is able to plug holes on offense, the future is actually a really positive one for this franchise. It’s an outlook that would normally have fans aflutter.
Still, it has only been a few weeks, and almost a month now, since that grand collapse on the grandest stage. No one, including this writer, will blame an Atlanta Falcons fan for wanting to turn a closed eye for a few weeks longer.
The nightmare was real and came true. But if you can muster the gumption to look, once again, towards Flowery Branch, there is a Red and Black silver lining. The Falcons have a great owner, great coaches, great players, and a great facility. In fact, this franchise is the best suited for success in this writer’s lifetime. They also have great fans, and in time, they will fly with the team again. When they do, it will be full-throated with clear eyes and hearts. It just may take some longer than others, and that’s OK. Everyone understands.