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Keys to Victory: NFC Championship Game

The ball is everything

The Falcons have been all about the ball this year, finishing plus-11 in the turnover margin. And while the ball has been an emphasis all year, the team has been executing at a high level in this particular area of late.

Atlanta has forced 11 turnovers in the last five games, a stat the Falcons look to build on come Sunday.

With extraordinary quarterbacking taking place from Matt Ryan and Aaron Rogers heading into the NFC title game, head coach Dan Quinn expects this game to come down to whoever finishes the game on the plus side of the turnover margin.

Green Bay has also shown a regard for the ball this season, as they are 8-1 when finishing in the plus. Rodgers has been at the forefront of this for his team, having thrown only seven interceptions.

"No question, the first thing is the ball," Quinn said. "For two teams to be in the plus, that's a significant factor. I think it will come down to that."

Win the line of scrimmage

Atlanta's offense is extremely hard to defend when they have balance between their pass and run game. That all starts with the play of Atlanta's offensive line, a unit that is playing their best football currently.

When Tevin Coleman and Devonta Freeman combine for 200 yards in total offense, the Falcons are 6-0. The dynamic duo plays a huge role in what Atlanta does offensively.

Defensively, in order to slow Rodgers, the pressure the Falcons are able to generate on the quarterback could be key in limiting his production. When pressured, Rodgers has a 49.1 completion percentage, compared to 70.7 percent when not pressured, per Pro Football Focus.

"With all the talk about quarterbacks, I think this game is going to be won at the line of scrimmage," Quinn said. "That's both sides of the ball, both teams [and] their run games, [the] protection. For us, you know the importance of having a balanced attack. Who can affect the quarterback, who can sustain run blocks, who can stay in and pass rush at the line of scrimmage. "

All about the finish

Coach Quinn has trained his team all year on the importance of the finish, and he expects this game to come down to the end, with the winner being the team who finishes.

"It's going to come down to the end, in the fourth quarter, who is going to handle those moments the best," Quinn said.

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