We came out more than flat in the first half...we just did not show up.
Just looking at the statlines from what occured in that half, it is a miracle we came back the way we did to make a game out of it. Over 100 yards rushing in the first half?
The Falcons didn't punt it till...what...the 4th quarter? They were killing us on 3rd downs, killing us in the flat and pounding us on the ground.
Bruce Irvin - not an every-down player in that position. he was manhandled all game and had 1 tackle. he should probably be embarrassed with his performance
Red Bryant - another total non-factor. he is a great body to be in there against downhill runners...but they were killing us on the edge where no one could expect a 330+lb guy to chase. not to mention he has no ability to pass rush.
Brandon Browner - i saw him get beat multiple times on comeback routes where he was playing way off the ball. he did NOT have the game we needed him to have especially in the first half
Our linebackers - just terrible in coverage today. Bobby Wagner wasn't much of a factor and i just didn't see much that would make me not hold their play at least somewhat accountable.
We were just totally outschemed for the first half. They capitalized on our big weaknesses and we didnt do much to adjust to what they were doing. Our blitzing was just eaten up. We didn't touch matt ryan all day...
So what does this say about or defense? we have a lot of work to do in the offseason. Tru is probably done, Thurmond can't stay healthy, Clemons is going in for surgery, Red Bryant is ineffective as a pass rusher and Irvin isn't the Leo we have been looking for. These are all pressing concerns that need to be addressed.
I'm not one to immediately blame the coaches for everything, as they do make mistakes, but the defensive scheme we were running for most of the day just was not the right one. This was disappointing...but it gives the team an opportunity to address these issues in the offseason and I think the front office is up to the task.