NFL playoff fallout can be an ugly thing for the losing teams.
Only 48 hours removed from their crushing NFC Championship game defeat to the San Francisco 49ers, fans of the Atlanta Falcons have begun to point the fingers of blame, and started to release their pent up anger. Just remember the old saying…when you point one finger at someone else, your other three fingers are pointed back at you.
“Matt Ryan is useless, and should be traded.” “Mike Smith should be fired.” “Our coaching staff stinks and can’t game plan.”
Shocking as it may seem, these are all actual things I’ve heard spoken from Falcons fans today. Don’t believe me? Let’s move from the audio and head to the always teeming Twitterverse.
— Dan Eaton (@DanEaton386) January 22, 2013
Just in…earlier Matt Ryan had got change for a dollar and now has only 50 cents. When asked, he had no clue how he lost the 2nd half! #fb
— Keno Trice (@KenoTrice) January 22, 2013
Mike Smith can’t coach in big games.Either fire him tomorrow or go through 3 more disappointing seasons of not reaching the SB.
— Millsy (@Young_Milly) January 20, 2013
Not even a Hail Mary??Wow, please fire Mike Smith, is he serious??
— troupos (@troupos) January 20, 2013
And trust me when I say that’s just a small sampling. Atlanta fans are quick to blame the two people who are probably the most responsible for even having them in a position to talk about Super Bowls. The Atlanta fan population that still wears their number “7” jerseys with the word “VICK” inscribed on the back needs to stop waiting for for Matt Ryan to fail, and start realizing what a special talent they have leading their team.
Why does it never occur to fans that sometimes…just sometimes…their team simply gets beaten by a better team? Why do fans never really sit and analyze everything that it took to go wrong for their team to lose? They just seem to pick the most visible people and/or players on the team and begin to light the fire for the witch-burning.
Yes, Matt Ryan fumbled a snap at a crucial time, and that had something to do with Atlanta not winning the game. But then again, he also threw for just short of 400 yards and three touchdowns, which had a lot to do with them even being in a position to come close to winning the game.
Were there other problems? You bet.
Roddy White stumbled and fell on a quick timing route, leading to an easy interception for the 49ers; Harry Douglas stumbled and fell while attempting to make a catch when the closest person to him was sitting in Row 1 in the stands (If Douglas even catches that ball partially in stride, or even standing still, he walks into the end zone.)
The Falcons offensive line didn’t open up enough holes to make the run game effective; the Falcons defensive line got nearly zero pressure on Colin Kaepernick for most of the game; the Falcons linebackers couldn’t keep up with TE Vernon Davis and got torched more often than a politician’s financial records.
Matt Ryan and Mike Smith are a huge part of the core to a consistently successful Atlanta Falcons franchise, something–I might add–that this city had never seen until they arrived. It would be wise of those who consider themselves to be fans of this franchise to be supportive and grateful, and to not further damage the images of Atlanta’s fan base.