There is almost nothing the Atlanta Falcons can do to prevent the San Francisco 49ers from putting points on the board, but what they can do is create turnovers. The Falcons finished fifth during the regular season in interceptions with 20 and 13th in fumble recoveries with eleven. The 49ers were excellent protecting the football, they only gave it up 16 times during the course of the season.
The combination of Asante Samuel, William Moore and Thomas DeCoud combined for 15 of the 20 interceptions the Falcons had during the regular season. They have to get into the act this week, or this game could get out of hand in a hurry. Last week, they intercepted Seattle Seahawks QB Russell Wilson just one time, but it was on a last second pass into the end zone, so it really does not count. They were able to get a fourth down stop and forced RB Marshawn Lynch to fumble the football and those were two key plays that helped them win the game.
The Falcons need to attack the football on every single tackle. First one there needs to control the runner or receiver and everybody else needs to be hacking at the football. Quarterbacks are notorious for having a carefree hold on the ball, so the Falcons have to attack QB Colin Kaepernick when he does decide to run the football. This game is going to be a dog fight and the Falcons know it. Get in the 49ers players’ faces on every single play and get in their head.
The crowd needs to be a huge factor as well. If someone drops a ball let them know how bad of a player they are. Great fans don’t let a single mistake get past them. Turnovers are everything in the NFL and nothing pumps up a crowd more than seeing a 300 pound lineman scoop up a fumble and run in back for a score. The Falcons can win this game, but they are going to have to win it on offense, defense and special teams.
Follow Kase Brammer on Twitter @KBlive33