The Atlanta Falcons are back from the bye and in the Georgia Dome to take on the Indianapolis Colts during their Salute to Service game. Here are pictures from gameday.
Offense Fails to Capitalize: Atlanta's D forced three turnovers—two interceptions, one fumble recovery—but the offense was unable to create any points on the ensuing drives. This, ultimately, allowed the Colts to fight back from two 14-points deficits and come away with a win.
"It's key," said Matt Ryan, who completed 25 of 46 passes for 280 yards, three touchdowns and three interceptions. "Obviously when the defense creates three turnovers and we come up with zero points off of those turnovers, we're not doing our job. I thought our defense did a nice job of giving us short field opportunities, and in those situations we have to come away with points, and we didn't do that today."
"I get frustrated when we don't play our best, so that's where it starts and ends with me from all phases, you know, in how we want to play," said Dan Quinn. "I think we've got a really talented outfit. For us, when we don't play at our best and we turn the ball over and don't get enough takeaways and not have the finish we like, there's a multitude of things that fall into that."
DiMarco Dazzles: Last Wednesday, when asked what the Falcons offense needs to do to improve, Patrick DiMarco said that, for the offense to reach its potential, it'd have to start converting in the red zone at a higher rate. The second-year fullback took this matter into his own hands against Indianapolis by hauling in two short touchdown catches in the first half. DiMarco's efforts, which will certainly help his Pro Bowl case, made him the 13th NFL fullback to score twice in a game since 1992.
"He's a factor in all phases of our game—special teams included," Quinn said of DiMarco. "He's a heck of a leader in the running back room, as well; he's someone who has our regard, the entire team by the way he goes about it each and every week."
Freeman Leaves With Head Injury: After tallying 43 rushing yards on three first-quarter carries, Devonta Freeman exited the game and, unfortunately, was diagnosed with a concussion. He'll spend the next week in concussion protocol; Tevin Coleman, who gained 48 yards against Indianapolis, will presumably take over the starting job until Freeman is cleared to return.
Julio Shines Again: Julio Jones turned in yet another stellar performance, this time grabbing nine passes for 160 yards. He now has 1,189 yards on the year and 89 catch, putting him on pace to be one reception short of Marvin Harrison's single-season record (143).
Pass Rush Looks Better: The Falcons did a solid job disrupting Matt Hasselbeck and came away with two sacks—one from Kroy Biermann, the other from Desmond Trufant on a corner blitz. With the way the secondary and run D looks as a whole, Quinn's defense can take a gigantic step forward in the second half if it continues to improve at rushing the passer.