Time Machine: Falcons-Cardinals History Lesson

The Atlanta Falcons have only played in two Thanksgiving games in their history. Take a look back at photos from the games against the Indianapolis Colts and the Detroit Lions.

Atlanta has faced off against Arizona three of the past four years with the Falcons winning two of three, including home victories in 2010 and 2012.

The Cardinals hold a slim 15-12 margin in the overall series that dates back to the Falcons inaugural campaign in 1966.

Arizona traveled to Atlanta in a Week 16 showdown at the Georgia Dome in 1999 and ran into an offensive explosion by the home team.

The Falcons rolled up a season-high 393 yards worth of offense, including 163 yards on the ground, to rout the visiting Cardinals.

RB Byron Hanspard became the first Falcon to top 100-yards rushing all season turning in a 102-yard effort on 26 carries to help them control the clock for 35:20.

FB Bob Christian was also effective enjoying a career-day that consisted of 54-yards rushing and two touchdowns, including a 33-yard scoring scamper in the fourth quarter.

The Birds of Atlanta struck first on the opening drive of the contest finishing the march with a 23-yard touchdown catch by WR Terance Mathis.

Arizona responded by scoring on their next two possessions on a pair of RB Mario Bates' one-yard rushes to take the lead 14-7 in the second quarter.  But the Cards didn't threaten again.

The Falcons scorched the Cardinals for scores on their next eight drives resulting in 30 total points.
Christian tallied his first six-pointer with a one-yard run followed by consecutive field goals by K Morten Andersen all in the second stanza.

Atlanta started the second half in similar fashion opening with a methodical 15-play, 80-yard drive that ended when Hanspard scored his first NFL rushing touchdown on a one-yard plunge to give the Birds a 27-14 advantage.

The Falcons added to their lead in the fourth quarter when Christian rambled 33-yards up the middle into the end zone. The run was the longest of the season and the longest of Christian's career. One last field goal was added later in the fourth for a 37-14 final score.

This article has been reproduced in a new format and may be missing content or contain faulty links. Please use the Contact Us link in our site footer to report an issue.