Overreaction Monday: Falcons (2-0), Georgia (3-0) can’t lose … ever!

Falcons running back Devonta Freeman scores a touchdown for a 14-7 lead over the Packers during the second quarter Sunday night. The Falcons’ offense clicked in Week 2 after struggling in the season opener. (Curtis Compton/ccompton@ajc.com)

Welcome back to Overreaction Monday, the weekly blog that asks the question:  “Will Al Michaels and Cris Collinsworth ever stop talking about the Super Bowl on the NBC broadcast?

(Answer: Not sure what they’re discussing at breakfast. “Yes, I think I’ll have the oatmeal. Hey, that reminds me of the Falcons’ defense in the fourth quarter? Did you see that game? So, what happened was …” But it was discussed extensively during the pregame show, and then in the first quarter, not surprisingly, and then the second, and the third and the fourth quarters. Fortunately, the game did not go into overtime or the two might have established a record that would never be broken, like Joe DiMaggio’s 56-game hitting streak.)

OK, onto the Monday narratives . . .

Falcons

Falcons linebacker Vic Beasley crushed Green Bay quarterback Aaron Rodgers on one sack but left the game with a hamstring injury. (Curtis Compton/ccompton@ajc.com

What happened: They beat Green Bay 34-23, their third win over the Packers in a span of about 11 months.

Next game: At Detroit against former Georgia quarterback Matthew Stafford and the Lions.

Overreaction narrative: “OK. We shouldn’t fire Steve Sarkisian, but that defensive collapse in the fourth quarter reminded me of …”

Reality check: Let’s start with the offense. Sarkisian called a far more aggressive game than he did in the season opener at Chicago and he got Devonta Freeman and Julio Jones involved early. That immediately put the Packers’ defense back on their heels and opened things up for other players — Mohamed Sanu, Taylor Gabriel, Tevin Coleman, etc. Players also executed better. The offensive line had a strong game. The Falcons had touchdown drives of 86 and 87 yards in the first half. Maybe being at home helped. Maybe having an unimpressive opener got everybody focused during the week. But the momentary panic over the offensive should subside now.

About the defense: It’s understandable why some folks might have been melting down when the Falcons’ lead went from 34-10 to 34-23 in the fourth quarter. The defense appeared to get a little softer and lose some of its aggressiveness. But remember two things: 1) That’s Aaron Rodgers. He’s the best quarterback in the NFL — yes, better than Tom Brady — and the Packers are the favorite of many to go to the Super Bowl; 2) The Falcons lost a number of players during the game to injuries, including Vic Beasley (hamstring) and Courtney Upshaw (ankle). That impacts their defensive front. The best sign for the defense was the play of cornerback Desmond Trufant, who missed nearly half the season and the playoffs last season with a pectoral injury. He had an interception that set up a  touchdown just before halftime and a 15-yard fumble return for a touchdown following a Beasley strip-sack in the third quarter. But, yes — the defense did let up in the fourth quarter, and injuries could be an issue moving forward.

Georgia

Georgia running back Nick Chubb carries the ball for a 32-yard touchdown against Samford at Sanford Stadium on Saturday. (Scott Cunningham/Getty Images)

What happened: Defeated Samford 42-14.

Next game: Home against Mississippi State in SEC opener.

Overreaction narrative: “We destroyed Samford. Florida and Tennessee stink. The SEC East is ours!”

Reality check: First of all, they didn’t cover the 35 points against Samford. So Georgia is dead to me. As for the SEC East — yes, they should win the division this season. I was at the Florida-Tennessee game and both teams were mediocre. They combined for six turnovers. But do I need to remind you of history — of what the Bulldogs have done in Jacksonville, of what has happened to them in Knoxville. All we really know about Georgia right now is they can beat up lesser teams at home (Appalachian State, Samford) but they have the mental and physical toughness to win a difficult road game (Notre Dame). The Dogs’ defense should be solid all season. Nick Chubb (131 yards, 8.2 yards per carry, two touchdowns) looked far better Saturday than he has in some time. But it was Samford. Not even Vanderbilt. Samford. Georgia now plays eight straight conference games and could be good enough to win them all, depending on their quarterback and offensive line play. But beating Mississippi State and then Vandy and Tennessee on the road will give us a better idea about this bunch than we know now.

Georgia State

Georgia State Panthers head coach Shawn Elliott (center) is off to a bad start in his first season as a head coach. (Jason Getz)

What happened: Lost at Penn State 56-0.

Next game: At UNC Charlotte in a non-conference game.

Overreaction narrative: “Shawn Elliott is a lousy head coach.”

Reality check: Not necessarily. We just don’t know yet that he was a great hire. The Panthers are 0-2 and they have scored only 10 points. But as ugly as the loss at Penn State was, that was expected. The game was scheduled for money, that’s all. From a football perspective, losing the season opener 17-10 at home to a FCS team, Tennessee State, was a bigger concern. It’s never a good idea to draw conclusions about a new head coach in the first season. Sometimes not even the second season. But Georgia State needs to show something to get people’s attention, because the afterglow of moving into the reconfigured former Turner Field lasts only so long. Elliott seems like a different personality than his predecessor, Trent Miles. But it may take him a while to turn Georgia State into a tough, physical football team. As a former defensive end and then an offensive line coach, it’s not hard to figure out what he likes. Also, recruiting large, physical beings remains job one. Prepare for another step back.

(Georgia Tech’s scheduled game at Central Florida Thursday night was canceled because of Hurricane Irma. The Yellow Jackets return to action at home against Pittsburgh Saturday in their ACC opener.)

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144 comments
..Arianna
..Arianna

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twelveofthirteen
twelveofthirteen

When you don't play a ranked team until the end of October and yet you still run your mouth about schedules?

Guess that's why 62-16 happens??!!??!!

Bawahwahwahwah

DawgNole
DawgNole

@OH:IO

What the hell does it matter when you play them, lying hypocrite?

You shouldn't be playing them at all. PERIOD!

twelveofthirteen
twelveofthirteen

JT Barret equal poor mans Kordell Stewart

Bawahwahwahwah

OH:IO
OH:IO

Auston Peay


Middle TN


UMass for the Late November Classic! 


SEC! SEC! 

twelveofthirteen
twelveofthirteen

Little ten cry babies don't play a ranked team again until October 28th! Over a month of noon loser fest crap games.

Little ten! Little ten!

twelveofthirteen
twelveofthirteen

Ohio State quarterback J.T. Barrett is 1-of-18 on passes thrown at least 20 yards downfield in his last four games (dating to last year's game against Michigan). Since his struggles began, 86 different Power 5 players have more completions on 20-yard throws than Barrett, including 16 players in the Big Ten.

When you suck well you suck!

#kickers

OH:IO
OH:IO

@twelveofthirteen


Site your source cut and paster. He just passed Drew Brees for the B1G most TD's responsible for all time. Suck on that. And while your sucking, suck on 1980. 

twelveofthirteen
twelveofthirteen

5 years in college? I would hope so. What is he 25?

Still couldn't get past Oklahoma bawahwahwahwah

DawgNole
DawgNole

@OH:IO

It's "cite" your source, dumb*ss.

STILL waiting, lying hypocrite.

DawgNole
DawgNole

@twelveofthirteen

Them rebs were losers in the greatest upset in CFB history only a few weeks ago.

Guess that's why oh:io's not even attempting to pump 'em up. Embarrassing.

twelveofthirteen
twelveofthirteen

Ohio State to judge: Dismiss Chris Spielman's lawsuit over image use.

Spielman just wants OSU to quit associating his face with the 62-16 flag planted losers.

Can you blame him?

twelveofthirteen
twelveofthirteen

Wawawawa goes the little ten cry baby.

62-16 = present and now!

#flagplanted

OH:IO
OH:IO

@twelveofthirteen


Present? Congrats. You just beat SaMMMMMMford and I bet you were barking. 


woof woof

Mulk
Mulk

If they lose to either Missy St., Tennessee or Vandy, it will tell you a lot about UGAG. I know a win is a win, but you still won't know very much if they beat all 3.

TideDawg
TideDawg

@Mulk  I know they will be 6-0. A better than expected Miss. St., a bitter rival Tennessee, and an unknown Vandy team. I'll take 6-0 but I think any team that is 6-0 in the SEC or ACC would take 6-0 regardless of who they beat.

Mulk
Mulk

@TideDawg @Mulk Agree. Still won't know much. A lot of Missy St. is based on their LSU win. LSU may be worse coached than the Vols.


I do think that Missy St. will be well coached.

DawgNole
DawgNole

@Mulk

So if they lose to any of them, it'll tell us a lot, but if they win all three it won't tell us much???

Typical of the BS you serve up here.

Mulk
Mulk

@DawgNole @Mulk If you had comprehension skills you would understand the post. If you beat all 3 what do you know? If you lose to any of them, you aren't very good. Those teams are not exactly murderer's row. That's my opinion. Do you have one? Do you believe that UGAG is a world beater because they beat Notre Dame? Do you think they will be world beaters if they beat all 3 of these teams? 


What is it that you that you typically "serve up here"? You hardly ever try to respond to a post. Instead, you berate posters (dumb*ss, smart *ss, idiot, stupid, liar, hypocrite) for their opinions without giving one of your own. Are you afraid that someone might capture one of your posts and feed it back to you? I don't know a lot of people on here that does that.


Read the article, understand the post and give your opinions related to the post. Try it.

Big Wally
Big Wally

"The kickers, the kickers, if it weren't for those darn kickers" - Urban Meyer 2017


Time for more fake heart attacks.

TideDawg
TideDawg

@Big Wally  Everybody has kickers, but it's that Oklahoma boot in Urban's but that really chafes him. I think he still has that Clemson paw on his backside too.

Big Wally
Big Wally

Look for an announcement from the Big 10 commish advising his schools to stay away from teams from the MAC or AAC.  It is not a good reflection on the conference to keep losing to those conferences.

TideDawg
TideDawg

@Big Wally  They're gonna run out of conference cupcakes and start playing Junior colleges.

Big Wally
Big Wally

Maybe it's the turf at the horseshoe.


bwhahahahahaa

Big Wally
Big Wally

New excuse - the kickers.  Shoulda, woulda, coulda.

fuzzybee86
fuzzybee86

Boy all of you guys sound like complete morons.

twelveofthirteen
twelveofthirteen

Noon vs UNLV. Ratings will be over the top.

Howard beat UNLV

Bawahwahwahwah

Big Wally
Big Wally

@twelveofthirteen Usually several Big 10 teams schedule Howard.  I guess UNLV is the next one down the list in regards to cupcakes.  And no, blowhio, UNLV is not in a Power 5 conference.

DawgNole
DawgNole

@twelveofthirteen "Howard beat UNLV."

_____________

Greatest upset in CFB history.

Even oh:io's too embarrassed to try and puff up that sorry excuse for an opponent.

OH:IO
OH:IO

@twelveofthirteen


The kicking games, kick-offs specifically  was the 4th or 5th thing Urban talked about in terms of areas needing improvement. Kick-offs was last on the list. 


Fake news, 12/13. Busted. 


P.S. 1980

DawgNole
DawgNole

@OH:IO

Kickoffs "were," idiot.

STILL waiting, lying hypocrite.

Big Wally
Big Wally

Chris Collingsworth(less) could take a discussion about the mating habits of Pandas and somehow turn it into a conversation about the Falcons Super Bowl loss.