The Atlanta Falcons finished the 2019 season with a 7-9 record but if it wouldn’t have been for a slow start, they could have been a playoff team. The Falcons won their last four games of the season and a big reason was because of their offensive production.
Even with the offense playing well the close out the season there are still some areas that side of the ball can really improve. Let’s breakdown four areas the Falcons can improve.
3. Ryan needs to get back to MVP level
Matt Ryan played okay during the 2019 season, but he wasn’t paid to play just okay. They extended him with a big contract with the expectation that he would play at an MVP level.
Ryan started 15 games during the 2019 season and threw 15 interceptions, which was the most since the 2015 season. He has had an average of 7.1 yards per attempt which was his lowest since 2015.
A lot of the struggles weren’t Ryan’s fault, but there is no doubt he can play better going forward, and that is going to be key to make it back to the playoffs.
2. Offensive line needs to be much better
One of Ryan’s big issues was not having any time. As Ryan gets older, every hit hurts a little more, and they need to do a better job of protecting their franchise quarterback. During the 2019 season the Falcons gave up 50 sacks which was the fifth-worst in all the NFL.
Ryan isn’t very mobile which doesn’t help, but none of the blame goes on the quarterback, it’s all on the line. They have spent a lot of draft capital on the line so the guys they have need to start playing better.
The playmakers outside are losing a lot of production because Ryan has no time to throw it to them.
1. They need more of a running game
There is no other way to put it, the running game for the Falcons need to be better. The Falcons averaged only 85.1 yards per game on the ground which ranked them 30th in the league.
Devonta Freeman averaged only 3.6 yards per carry which isn’t good enough. The team could cut him this offseason and only have $6 million in dead cap space, so that is an option.
Even if the team does bring him back next season, the team needs to be aggressive getting him another guy that can take some of the pressure off of him.