The Falcons are back on the West Coast for a match up against the Los Angeles Rams. Take a look at these photos from the game.
Falcons Create Bevy of Turnovers: One of Dan Quinn's keys to victory on Sunday was to win the turnover battle. Another was to earn good field position. The Falcons wasted no time accomplishing those goals, as Paul Worrilow recovered a fumble on the opening kickoff to give Atlanta's offense the ball at Los Angeles' three-yard line. Matt Ryan threw a touchdown to Justin Hardy on the following snap.
Shortly thereafter, Deion Jones intercepted Goff and ran it 33 yards to the house for his second pick-six of the year. That highlight, along with a Ricardo Allen interception and three fumble recoveries, gave Atlanta five turnovers created on the day, a season-high, and five defensive TDs in 2016 – tied for the most in the NFL.
Beasley Adds to Sack Total:Vic Beasley, Jr. tallied three sacks in Los Angeles and two forced fumbles – the last of which was a strip-sack he picked up and ran into the end zone for six points. The 2015 first-rounder now has 13.5 sacks in 2016, the second-most a Falcon has ever earned in a single season. What's more, Beasley's second FF was his seventh of the year, the most an Atlanta player has recorded in one campaign.
Pass Defense Steps Up:The struggles LA's offense endured went far beyond Jared Goff's two interceptions. The Falcons' defense consistently made matters difficult for the rookie quarterback, who completed 24 of 41 passes for 235 yards, zero touchdowns and the aforementioned picks. LA scored only two touchdowns – one run by Todd Gurley, the other by Goff – and was held to 311 yards from scrimmage on 67 plays. Or, in other terms, 4.6 yards per rep.
Gabriel Goes Off Again: Taylor Gabriel continued his stellar season by hauling in three receptions, a team-best 82 receiving yards and a 64-yard touchdown grab in the third quarter. The former Cleveland Brown is averaging 17.4 yards per catch this year and, with six scores, is third on the Falcons in TDs. Four of them were 35-plus-yard plays.
Ryan Spreads the Wealth: Without the services of Julio Jones and Mohamed Sanu, Matt Ryan succeeded by distributing the ball to his deep collection of wide receivers, tight ends and running backs. In total, eight Falcons recorded a catch; three gained at least 42 yards through the air. Ryan finished 18 of 28 for 237 yards, three touchdown passes and zero interceptions, giving him a 126.6 quarterback rating. The veteran signal-caller also reached 4,000 passing yards for the sixth-straight season, which is tied for the second-longest streak in NFL history.