By The Numbers: Bucs at Falcons

1 - Career rushing touchdowns for Devin Hester after his 20-yard end-around TD run that put Atlanta up 21-0 in the first quarter. Hester was just getting started with his historical night.

1 - Number of games the Falcons play at the Georgia Dome between now and November 23. Five of the next seven games are road games for Atlanta, but one of the two "home" games  during that stretch takes place at Wembley Stadium in London against the Detroit Lions.

2 - First downs for the Bucs in the first half of the game. Atlanta's defense held their division rivals to just 63 total yards in the first half and never let them sniff the red zone.

2 - Matt Bryant's rank on the all-time Falcons career scoring list after his 8 extra points against Tampa Bay gave him 564 and vaulted him past Mick Luckhurst (558 points). Bryant trails only Morten Andersen, who scored 806 points in his Falcons' career.

3 - Phases of the game in which the Falcons scored touchdowns tonight: 6 on offense (3 passing, 3 rushing), 1 on defense (Kemal Ishmael's pick-six) and 1 on special teams (Devin Hester's historic punt return touchdown).

3 - Sacks for the Falcons' defense in the game, their first 3 sacks of the 2014 season. Corey Peters and Jonathan Massaquoi each registered a sack in the first half, while Stansly Maponga, who also recovered a fumble to set up a Steven Jackson touchdown run, dropped Bucs' backup QB Mike Glennon in the fourth quarter.

4 - Minutes remaining in the third quarter when Matt Ryan replaced his football helmet with a baseball cap. Ryan left the game with 4:34 in the third after completing 21 of 24 passes for 286 yards, 3 TDs, no INTs and a 155.9 quarterback rating.

4 - Straight Falcons-Bucs games in which WR Harry Douglas has caught a touchdown pass. Starting at wide receiver in place of Roddy White, who was inactive for the game, Douglas caught 2 passes for 14 yards and a 3-yard touchdown - Atlanta's first of eight touchdowns on the night. Douglas left the game late in the second quarter with a foot injury and did not return. He was replaced in the game by WR Eric Weems.


The Falcons face the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in a Thursday Night Football matchup in the Georgia Dome. Check out these pictures of the game.

5 -** Receptions for Julio Jones in the first quarter Thursday against the Bucs, the most ever in a single quarter for the fourth-year pro.

5 - Turnovers forced by the Falcons defense in the game, including 4 fumble recoveries and a pick-six interception by Falcons safety Kemal Ishmael.

7 - Minutes left in the second quarter when Tampa Bay registered their first first down of the game. The Falcons defense held the Bucs to just two first downs in the first half and 10 in the game. Atlanta's offense tallied 26 first downs in the blowout victory.

8 - Rushing yards surrendered by the Falcons' defense in the first half.

12 - Combined yards the Falcons had gained on their game-opening drives in the first two games of the season, running eight plays, mustering just one first down and not advancing beyond their own 45-yard line. Tonight, the Falcons opened the game by marching down the field on a 6-play, 70-yard drive capped by Douglas' touchdown grab. 

20 - Career return touchdowns for Devin Hester, who passed Deion Sanders as the all-time NFL leader when he took a 56-yard Michael Koenen punt 62 yards to the house in the second quarter to extend Atlanta's lead to 35-0. Hester became emotional after the game discussing the record, which he broke in front of close friend Sanders and his former head coach and mentor, Lovie Smith.

21 - Points the Falcons scored in the first quarter, the second most they've ever scored in a single quarter and tied for the most ever the club has scored in the first quarter of a game. The franchise record for the most points scored in a single quarter is the 28 points Atlanta put up against Carolina on November 23, 2008.

35 - Points scored by the Falcons in the first half, the second-most they've scored in a half in club history. Atlanta hung 42 points on the same Tampa Bay franchise in the first half of a 2012 game.

38 - Minimum distance for Antone Smith's four career touchdown runs. In addition to tonight's 38-yard rumble, Smith's other three career touchdown runs have gone for 38, 50 and 54 yards.

87.5 - Completion percentage for Matt Ryan in the game (21 of 24), a single game Falcons franchise record for completion percentage in a game.

111 - Receiving yards for Julio the FIRST HALF. Jones had seven catches for 111 yards and a touchdown as the teams retreated to their halftime locker rooms. Jones finished the game with 9 catches for 161 yards (second most yards in a game in his career) and two touchdowns.

155.9 - Final QB rating for Matt Ryan, a career high and a franchise record. The highest possible QB rating attainable in a game is 158.3, which has only been achieved 61 times in NFL history.

455 - Average yards per game for the Falcons through three games this season. They entered the game as the NFL's number two ranked offense with 438.5 yards per game, trailing only Philadelphia (439 yards per game). But after tonight's 488-yard output, the Falcons have a good shot of emerging from week three perched atop the League.

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