McCoy calls out Falcons’ defense for ‘jogging’ — and he’s right

Jameis Winston made the Falcons' defense look silly (and sleepy) last Sunday. (Cliff McBride/Getty Images)

Jameis Winston made the Falcons’ defense look silly (and sleepy) last Sunday. (Cliff McBride/Getty Images)

The big debate going on amid the Falcons’ collapse is whose fault is it: Matt Ryan’s or Kyle Shanahan’s? I’ll address that (again) in a column later in the week. But there’s something actually more important going on and it was brought home in Sunday’s loss at Tampa Bay.

The Falcons aren’t “finishing.” They’re not finishing plays or quarters or games. That’s not on Ryan or Shanahan as much as it’s on coach Dan Quinn because “finishing” has been his mantra since he arrived. The defense missed an abysmal number of tackles in Sunday’s 23-19 loss to the Buccaneers and looked comatose during Jameis Winston’s 20-yard run on third-and-19, which set up the deciding touchdown.

I referenced the play here in the game column, linked here. Michael Cunningham wrote about it in his breakdown of the play, linked here. Quinn has admonished players for it and some players have acknowledged their mistakes. But now the team has been called out by Tampa Bay defensive tackle Gerald McCoy.

First, here’s the play again:

McCoy told the Buccaneers’ radio network (via JoeBucsFan.com): “Go back and look at the play and look at Jameis’ speed, and how he was playing, as opposed to look at the Atlanta Falcons and the speed they were playing at. They had thought he was down, guys walking around, jogging to him. Even when he started running again, guys were just jogging, ‘Oh, we’ll get him down.’ And Jameis was running for his life. You could just see the difference in how he was playing opposed to how the other team was playing. I mean, you just, we want it, man.”

Players don’t like being called out by opponents. But in this case, the Falcons can’t say a word because McCoy speaks the truth. They know it. Quinn knows it. And I can reaffirm what you probably already know: Quinn was still livid about the play on Wednesday when I spoke to him. The sluggish play didn’t just lose the game, it’s a reflection on him and on the attitude of the way his team plays. It would be a reflection on any coach, let alone one who spent his career preaching aggressiveness on the defensive side of the ball, which showed when he was the defensive coordinator in Seattle.

Yes, Ryan and Shanahan deserve to absorb some hits for what is going on with the offense. But until those problems get worked out, the Falcons had better control what they can — and that’s not taking mid-game naps.

Recent ramblings

Reader Comments 0

51 comments
Gman84
Gman84

Quinn speaks in meaningless bumper sticker slogans. Never seemed like the real deal. Just another bad hire by a Rankin Blank.

E983
E983

He's got too many of the leftovers. They're still a lazy defense that not only can't finish, they still can't tackle, cover, get sacks make big plays and shut down an offense that's run by a rookie QB. And don't get me started on the offense. They ran Kyle Shanahan and his father out of DC and for good reason. Reminds me of the great Dan Henning hire in 1983 from DC. He was going to take us to a Super Bowl too. They fired him and hired, get this, Marion Campbell......AGAIN!!!

jeeperscrow
jeeperscrow

Schultz thought Quinn was the right hire for the Falcons. I remember many columns of him explaining this to us. Now how long will it be before Schultz calls for Quinn to be fired?

patriotdog
patriotdog

50 years of mostly failure. Arthur, now do you believe me when I said you fired the wrong guy?

Smitty, Quinn, Belichick or Lombardi could not fashion a competitive team out of the roster that

Jimmy Neutron the GM has built.

Your boy Shanahan makes some odd moves, questionable play calls but the bottom line is the roster is CFL qualiy. The problem is that this is the NFL.

madburro
madburro

sure, the falcons suck---but relax, thomas is working on a new deal to trade 5 draft picks for another wide receiver! julio getting old!

tyger
tyger

Whole lot of nothing...


Falcons simply outplayed again...

Jameis Winston run is a fluke play...

3 guys hit him - forward progress stopped...


Big guys, i.e. Clayburn, run outta gas...

Not expected to make plays 20+ yds downfield...

Falcons didnt play thru whistle true enough...

But any reasonable person wouldve slowed too...


Falcons just lost again...

That's only one play...

Just like late INT - 

Just one play...


How bout playing 2 complete halves...

That should be focus, not 1-2 plays.

GaLatino
GaLatino

@tyger 1-2 bad plays when teams are evenly matched will often determine the outcome.  I can't stand Bill Belichick, but the reason his teams win, besides cheating, is they always preach the "one bad play" mantra.

Hopeless in ATL
Hopeless in ATL

Clayborn (99) didn't hit a soul.  In fact, it seems he was looking for a place to lay down.

GeorgiaBugman
GeorgiaBugman

C'mon folks, be fair. The Falcons are always hitting the ball carrier - they just don't tackle.

lighteredknot
lighteredknot

How many penalties have been called on  Falcons, for   late hits particularly on QBs vs Falcons.  Why ever call illegal contact on DBs down field as opponents are allowed to undress Julio Jones as they always did Gonzales prior years. Do everything but put a saddle on him and yet still ride him. Look at the Buc's offensive plays, offensive linemen holding  worse than # 71  Theus for the Dogs.  Rody White  is the only wide receiver and Atl Tight End are the players called for holding.  Hell, I see other receivers where one can not even back away from them  for  being held.                              I have watched this for 50 years and it's now anti-climatic. Go back to Colts game where Atl RB out of bounds put foot up to keep Def player off him and drew a  penalty.  A few plays later in front of Ref a Colt player kick and tried to knee Falcon and another Falcon ask for flag and he was ignored.   Falcons should have retained Witherspoon as he would lay a lick on anyone including the QB.   Remember RD III?  The litany could go on. 

madburro
madburro

ATL quit early on that play---they were beaten and had no offense to come back.

he_of_stinky_wind
he_of_stinky_wind

#52 is the Falcon who stood Winston back up.  Too funny.  Zero wrap up by him.  Should already have been cut.


At least Warlow was blocked in the back, pushed down from behind by  TB #84 before he could hit Winston.  Ref 10 feet away, no penalty.

Savdon
Savdon

Oh peshaw.  This was just a play representative of the last 50 seasons.  It's ALWAYS something.

Big Wally
Big Wally

paul worrilow is horrible.  A dimitroff acquisition.  Go figure.

he_of_stinky_wind
he_of_stinky_wind

No huddle == TD but Shanahan doesn't like no huddle.  He can't control it.

patriotdog
patriotdog

Tommy would have been in the HOF 30 years ago if he had played for ANYONE other than the sad sack bunch in Atlanta. Every bit as good as Butkus or Nitschke,

and that's not based on film highlights. I watched the man starting with his rookie season. Phenomenal linebacker.

Averaged 21 tackles a game as a rookie.

TOJacket
TOJacket

@patriotdog I bet Tommy doesn't think the 66 Falcons were a "sad sack bunch"?...........you have "dog"at the end of your moniker........you should be used to going long periods of time without a championship?

Gman84
Gman84

A chicken will still run around for a while after their head is cut off. Falcons are way out of the playoffs

TOJacket
TOJacket

How can a Coach with the rep of Quinn put up with that sheet?

Big Wally
Big Wally

Canadian Football League talent.  Thanks Dimitroff and Piolo.

OH:IO
OH:IO

FIRE SCHANNY!


FIRE BFF SCHOTTY!


FIRE OBAMA for than matter! 

BooBooBear
BooBooBear

It was the fourth quarter.  An indoor team was playing outside just a few degrees north of the equator in the afternoon.  The 15 second logjam at the 33 yard line made everyone think he was down.  It was the QB running and in the NFL today if a defender looks at one sideways it is a penalty and an automatic first down.  He would have made it on fourth down anyway and the team was trying to save time for Ryan to win it at the last second.  The team had become used to losing and no one had held back any of their pay, so what's the big whoop?  A loss would only drop the record to 6-6 and still allow them to be one of the NFC's elite teams - by record.  Finally, Saturn was putting tremendous pressure on the Falcon's Mercury, causing their leg muscles to cramp more easily.

lighteredknot
lighteredknot

@BooBooBear  Why don't you just say the Falcons Bio- rhythms were low for that day.  The other is piled too deep.

TideDawg
TideDawg

Aging veterans play hard when winning but I think when you start losing they play not to get hurt and with less enthusiasm.

Hell Horsey
Hell Horsey

Where is ole chopp to spin this next disaster?  I thought this team was playoff bound, if only to help pork chopp and his fellow Falcons ticket office coworkers to sell overprices PSLs to buy tickets to see the FALCONS LOSE AGAIN AND AGAIN?  Maybe he's hiding away in his janitor's closet office strategizing how to get morons to actually pay to watch this garbage team, that can't even run to tackle a QB before he converts a 3rd and 19!


WISE UP, pork chopp!

TOJacket
TOJacket

@Hell Horsey @TOJacket Must be a male dwag fan?.........they're always consumed with male genitalia?........oh well, they got nothing else I guess?......LOL

DawgNole
DawgNole

@TOJacket 

You like screaming braggarts who hide when their idiotic predictions fail to come through? You can do better--or at least you should

Chopp September 1, 2015

@DawgNole DEAD. SERIOUS. FALCONS 2015 NFC SOUTH CHAMPS.

moh236
moh236

Yep, it's Shanny's way or the highway even when it's not working. Let's keep doing what we're doing and expect a different result - ain't gonna happen. Teams know what he does and are ready for it cause they know he ain't going to change. 

If DQ doesn't get rid of him, it's going to cost him his job. Ryan & Jones only have so many prime years left and Shanny is wasting them.

As for the defense, I don't know what's going on there. I thought they would be our strong suit this year. They probably see that the offense isn't going to do anything, so why should they bust their butts. 3 and out (or turn over) & they're right back on the field.

TideDawg
TideDawg

@moh236 I don't know if this is the problem or not, but all of this started when a disgruntled Roddy White started complaining because he didn't get his (touches). It seemed like the entire offense shifted from Jones to try and get more balls to White. Whatever happened to the Falcon's tight ends? Can't they catch? Ryan didn't just go bad overnight. He is not comfortable in this offense.

lighteredknot
lighteredknot

@TideDawg @moh236  Jones is totally mugged from the snap.  White I believe was just commenting and you take it too hard.  White has dropped a few but also caught a few. He also has been playing hurt and Falcons,  I believe do not want it published. I  Do not blame them.   Tight end and fullback have caught very well. Don't see much context in your comment in those regards.

HistoryofMatt
HistoryofMatt

It's inexcusable at this point.


Also, for your piece you'll be writing later in the week, I would only make one suggestion:


Call Donovan McNabb.


Donovan McNabb was NOT washed up before he went to DC in 2010.


He made the Pro Bowl in 2009. He had one of his best statistical years ever as a QB in 2009.


He went to DC with a lot of fanfare. Johnny Unitis in L.A. he was not.


He was absolutely ruined by Kyle Shanahan, who refused to work with him, who refused to change anything about his offense to fit what McNabb did well, who refused to give him audible control at the line, who refused to run screen passes to compensate for a weak O-line, who refused to run any no-huddle.


And then, all we heard about McNabb from "leaks" to the press was that he wasn't able (too stupid) to fully grasp the brilliance of Kyle Shananan's offense.


And after a little more than a year with Kyle Shanahan, Donovan McNabb went from Pro Bowl QB to ruined QB.


Does any of that sound familiar?


What happened to Donovan McNabb is happening to Matt Ryan, but unlike McNabb, who did begin to complain at the end, Ryan is playing the good soldier all the way to the end.


Please, do the one thing no one seems to be doing right now. Call Donovan McNabb. Find out the real truth about Kyle Shanahan.