First of all, I apologize to all of the Lions fans out there. The reason the Lions lost last week can be put on my shoulders. I did not post my weekly “Three Reasons Why” post and every time I made one of these posts, the Lions ended up winning. Sorry Detroit.
1. Atlanta is terrible against the pass.
Let’s look at the stats. The Lions rank 8th in the league in passing yards per game while the Falcons rank 27th in pass defense. That doesn’t bode well for the Atlanta’s defense especially since Matthew Stafford is second in the league in pass attempts. A very pass-happy team versus a team who can’t defend the pass should equal success for the Lions. Scott Linehan has been criticized for last week’s play calling by the fans and the media. If I were him, I would want to attack Atlanta’s secondary right away instead of calling more conservative plays. I expect Matthew Stafford to have a huge day through the air.
2. The Falcons don’t run the ball as much as they did last year.
Last year, the Falcons were known for long, hard-earned drives and ranked second in time of possession. A large reason they were able to accomplish that was because of RB Michael Turner. Turned ranked third in the NFL in rushing yards but has slipped five positions this year to eighth. That’s good news for the Lions. We should all know by now that the Lions aren’t the best at stopping the run (I’m still puzzled why considering the talent of the front seven). Many fans are wondering why the Falcons are passing so much instead of running the ball which won them the NFC South title last year.
3. Atlanta’s offensive line isn’t the best.
In an interview with SLR, Jamie Kelly of Blogging Diry told Zac Snyder that Atlanta’s offensive line isn’t built for the pass. Like I said earlier, Offensive Coordinator Mike Mularkey is calling a great amount of passing plays. Matt Ryan hasn’t been what he was last year and a lot of that has to do with the protection of the offensive line. So far on the season, the Falcons have allowed 40 QB Hits (3rd worst in the league). I think Lions fans can expect a repeat of the defensive line’s performance against Chicago. Hopefully this time, Matt Ryan won’t get himself out of danger as many times as Jay Cutler did.