Blank stands by Smith, Dimitroff. What say you?

Falcons owner Arthur Blank is standing by Mike Smith and Thomas Dimitroff. (Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

Falcons owner Arthur Blank is standing by Mike Smith and Thomas Dimitroff. (Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

Falcons owner Arthur Blank is standing by Mike Smith and Thomas Dimitroff. (Getty Images)

All together now: The Falcons are 2-3. The Falcons can’t win on the road. The Falcons are weak on the defensive front and can’t sustain a pass rush. The Falcons aren’t using Antone Smith enough.

That about cover it for now?

So here’s another voice on the subject — the most important voice.

I spoke to Falcons owner Arthur Blank on the subject of his struggling team. He said some things that I expected. He maintained confidence in coach Mike Smith and his staff and general manager Thomas Dimitroff. But I found it noteworthy that he chose not to issue public mandates like, “This team must make the playoffs” or give assurances what he would do if the Falcons finished with a losing record and missed the postseason again.

“I would say to you, and I mean it sincerely: I have confidence in the coaching staff and the GM and the players,” Blank told me. “I’m not speculating during the season about what might happen after the season. That’s not compatible with doing what I should be expected to do.”

For the full column on my conversation with Blank on MyAJC.com, click here.

Here’s my question for you: What’s your confidence level in this team right now? Is it a playoff team or not? Also, whom do you blame most for the Falcons’ start and seeming direction: Coaching or the front office?

I put up polls for both and, as always, the cyber floor is yours.

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Reader Comments 0

269 comments
DrTruth
DrTruth

Last Monday night, ESPN did a brief presentation at the start of the show of HOW the Seahawks turned themselves into a championship team so quickly.  Blank, Dimitroff & the entire Falcons organization should be strapped down with their eyelids taped open and FORCED to watch that presentation over and over and over until they collectively cry uncle, as in, "OK...I think we all get it now."


Unfortunately Arthur Blank may not live to see the day the Falcons org finally does "get it"...  

Jazzpman
Jazzpman

Well at some point, the Falcon's will realize Defense it what wins championships.

The lopsided money given to the offensive side of the Ball is all for Show.

The trading away of so many picks for ONE player is no way to build a solid team.  We see the players getting hurt, and non NFL talent is the current Falcon's second string.


And REALLY how many TD draft picks are playing Sunday ?


tlmaddox
tlmaddox

Well, Smith and Dimitroff are under 1 year contracts.  Their time with the Falcons will expire on its own.

GSU93
GSU93

In fact from that 2009 Draft, William Moore is the only player still on the team.  LOL!

GSU93
GSU93

Yep, in 2009 the Falcons drafted Jerry #24 overall.  Two picks later, GB took Matthews.  If they had Matthews on their D 2 years ago, I bet they would have won that NFC championship.  He's the type of disruptive playmaker that they have lacked under this regime.

GSU93
GSU93

If I'm not mistaken, they passed on Clay Matthews to take Jerry!  How stupid was that move?  They also took Holmes in the 3rd freaking round when the draft experts had him rated as a 5th or 6th rounder.  What a joke TD is...

BigHittas
BigHittas

maybe Blank has been on the phone to Harbaugh.

HDB0329
HDB0329

Two people need to get fired immediately: Thomas Dimitroff and Mike Nolan!! Rather than to invest in a decent defense and offensive line, Dimitroff hasn't been able to get the personnel we need to be a Super Bowl contender!! Mike Nolan couldn't coach a defense if he tried!! The "amoeba" defense isn't working...and he just played a vanilla defense against Minnesota....not even a decent zone blitz scheme!!


Dirk Koetter needs to start going vertical more.....I'd rather see June Jones as Koetter's assistant....we need a variation of the run-and-shoot offense if we're to use the receiving talent that we've got!! Incorporate the vertical passing game more rather than the West Coast variations...use Harry Douglas and Devin Hester more as threats...start Antone Smith and Devonte Freeman...CUT Stephen Jackson (that tipping in the hole doesn't work!)


If we go 9-7, I can live with that......

chasjons
chasjons

I think when the Saints won the Super Bowl in 2009 some GMs shifted their team's focus more to offense and less on defense.  Unfortunately, defense slumps less often than offense does and the paradigm has shifted. Seahawks have proven that a great defense and a good to mediocre offense trumps a great offense and a good to mediocre defense.   Seahawks have a good offense and a great defense whereas the Falcons have a good offense and a bad defense. 

TreeRollins
TreeRollins

Just remember, as owners go, only the Clampett's ever got us to the Super Bowl here with the Falcons!

TreeRollins
TreeRollins

They weren't demanding brand-new stadiums when the existing one was perfectly fine. Nor were they hiring hair gel GM's.

Okay, they did hire Jerry Glanville. But at least he was fun.

FonWunjah
FonWunjah

come on people, lets look at this for what it is. we have the #1 office in the NFL and our defence is last in pass and stopping the run. I blame all of this on the GM, we gave almost 600 yards to Vike, led by a rookie QB, our D can't stop anyone and trust me, i could have done a better this off season than our GM did. three of the best pass rusher were on the market (julius peppers, demarcus ware, jared allen) and we didn't get any of them. we don't get pressure on any QB, watching our D play is like watching Georgia o line v high school j v.

Soothsayer2
Soothsayer2

It's not Mike Smith's fault. And, it's certainly not the Falcons fault. It's the fact that they have to play in that crappy old out-of-date stadium.

You'll see: they'll win the Super Bowl once they get their new stadium. I just know it!

PappyHappy
PappyHappy

For Pete's sake folks!  Look how many of the FIRST TEAM that have had to sit out due to injuries.  Truth is, when you look around the league, there is not a breakout yet -- except for Seattle -- and that is only one of 31!  They are not going to win every game, and neither will the other 30 teams!

ATLiens
ATLiens

The problems are persistent. They HAVENT properly ADDRESSED the defense in years. You can't contend seriously without one.

sal2177
sal2177

Good ole fair-weather fans complaining again.  I'm calling it now.  If the Falcons beat the struggling Bears Sunday, all you're going to hear about is how great the team is and the fans will be right back to praising the team.

DawgDadII
DawgDadII

@sal2177  Um, I wouldn't expect that to happen. All Falcons fans are rooting for a victory, but most of us know a home win at this point in the schedule is not an indicator this team is headed for the playoffs.

Boxtradamus
Boxtradamus

I should would just absolutely hate having to work in any capacity for Arthur Blank.

Li'le Bill
Li'le Bill

They always say they'll stand behind the coach. You watch and see --  another .500 season -- no playoffs and Smith's head will be on the chopping block next year.  When Blank does make some changes, how about getting rid of those gawdawful uniforms.  We're sick and tired of seeing red & black (leave those colors for the dogs).  I'll take any other colors but pink & purple.

Ersatz
Ersatz

Blank is going to fire this front office and hand the keys to Sexy Rexy. Inside scoop.

Ersatz
Ersatz

That's the rumor I heard from my barber.

goblue86
goblue86

@Ersatz Because he has done such an awesome job with the Jets?


Bordertownbound
Bordertownbound

@goblue86 @Ersatz LOL well who else do you think is out there if you fire smith. We will just get some other crap bag that someone else fired this year. You don't think someone is going to come here just to have to rebuild a team do you.....

UnbiasedObserver
UnbiasedObserver

The Dimitroff dude is more concerned with looking good, his own personal style, being seen.....than being a good General Manager.


Get some Football Men in there.

Termigator
Termigator

Mike Smith is a very good coach, but Dimitroff seems bent on picking players from fringe schools instead of safe picks from the power conferences. My guess is whether it is subconscious or not he thinks it makes him out to be some kind of a football guru; which he is not.

KatyWatts
KatyWatts

Would someone please remind me why we are spending millions on a new stadium for a losing football team?

4DaBirds
4DaBirds

@KatyWatts You are not spending a dime on the new stadium. Who is we? The Falcons are on the hook for the bulk of the funding. Hotel tax is to cover a part as well, as is the GWCC. Income and property taxes do not equate into the formula. The state and the GWCC stand to profit as do the Falcons. You have a choice to support the team or not. My guess is that you don't support them now, and won't support the team in the future either.

MotocrossSurvivor
MotocrossSurvivor

In Sunday's game, I couldn't help but notice the nice OPEN AIR stadium the Giants play in.  That's a real football stadium, out in the sunshine, rain, cold, whatever.  Same with other cities with much harsher climates.  Leave it to this silly town to always now have to have the tacky, katrillion dollar indoor boondoggle stadiums with all the bells and whistles.  Proud to say I have never been to the GA Dome.

Ruffski
Ruffski

@MotocrossSurvivor Agreed! I can't stand indoor, climate-controlled football. 


Yes, for those about to chime in, I do realize that they plan to use the facility to attract other big events. Still, it sucks...

MotocrossSurvivor
MotocrossSurvivor

@4DaBirds @MotocrossSurvivor Is attending games in the HeeHaw Dome a requirement for posting about Falcon football?  And don't give me the Delta is Ready When You Are line.  Born and raised GA.

4DaBirds
4DaBirds

@MotocrossSurvivor @4DaBirds So you're saying you would come to games if the Falcons played outside? You comment about the Dome, but you've never been there. So how do you know the Dome is something you can't stand? 

Ersatz
Ersatz

If you like indoor football, you have a small penis.

phatnate
phatnate

After watching Hard Knocks it's pretty obvious Mike Smith has gotten very soft.   Watching him in the office talk with players and coaches with shorts and flip flops seemed to be how he was most comfortable.

AGGIE4life
AGGIE4life

The Julio Jones draft pick is coming back to haunt the falcons. In this league you have to have a great nucleus of players along with solid back ups. The falcons need to address their need in a solid pass rusher along with help at linebacker and the safety position. When you have to rely upon blitzing to produce pressure this requires your secondary and back seven to have to cover up to many holes. As the old saying goes. You have to have one to catch one and players make good coaches great coaches. This is all the front office.

4DaBirds
4DaBirds

@AGGIE4life It's not the Julio pick that is hurting this team. It was picking Jamal Anderson at 8 when you could have had Clay Matthews Jr. It was signing Ray Edwards to a contract he never earned before or after joining the Falcons. It was giving Dunta Robinson a huge contract for very mediocre play. It was letting Grimes walk, but overpaying Osi Umenyora to do basically nothing, and cutting a still productive John Abraham. Not having a decent OL coach for the last few years, and no depth on the OL. Not picking good safeties is also something else that TD has not done well to go along with not having any decent LB's since letting Lofton walk.

Dirtyb8
Dirtyb8

@4DaBirds Jamal Anderson? But nonetheless, good post and very accurate.

kumon
kumon

Since Arthur Blank is standing by Mike Smith and Thomas Dimitroff, it want matter what I think or what the fans think.

MotocrossSurvivor
MotocrossSurvivor

@kumon He stands behind Smith because there's nobody else.  Maybe a good high school coach might give it a try.

4DaBirds
4DaBirds

@kumon Arthur Blank is standing by these guys now, but if we see another 4-12 year, then you can bet that Blank will fire both of these guys at seasons end.

Bordertownbound
Bordertownbound

@4DaBirds @kumon Blank is a business man and isn't led by emotion like the Falcons Fans. He knows he's had several winning seasons under Smith which has produced revenue and knows Smith and the team could provide more. He's not getting rid of him unless a sure Superbowl contender coach comes available. That isn't Lovie Smith or Rex Ryan.......

4DaBirds
4DaBirds

@Bordertownbound @4DaBirds @kumon Yes Blank is a business man, and he knows that you must win in today's NFL to further your revenue. Blank wants to win, and he does not like losing division games. 


Blank hired Smith and he was a nobody out of Jacksonville, and not a Super Bowl coach. There is the D Coordinator (Dan Quinn) out of Seattle who could be looking for a HC job, Jim Harbaugh is not getting along with the owners in SF, and there are others as well. Smith is not the best option going forward.