2014 DRAFT GUIDE
Falcons lose to Cardinals 27-13

By JOHN MARSHALL - AP Sports Writer
    2013-10-27 20:39

GLENDALE, Ariz. (AP) - The Atlanta Falcons overcame Matt Ryan's miserable day to beat the Arizona Cardinals last season.

More mistakes by Ryan and an awful day on defense were too much to overcome the second time around.

Ryan threw four interceptions and rookie Andre Ellington ran for 154 yards and a touchdown against Atlanta in his first NFL start, sending the Falcons to a disheartening 27-13 loss to the Cardinals on Sunday.

''We didn't play well,'' Falcons coach Mike Smith said. ''We have to get it fixed.''

There's plenty to work on.

Coming off a solid home win over Tampa Bay, the Falcons (2-5) struggled on both sides of the ball against a team that had lost its previous two games.

Atlanta had to settle for field goals when it moved the ball in the first half and made numerous mistakes while trying to catch up in the second. The Falcons had trouble protecting Ryan and had virtually no run game to take the pressure off.

Stephen Jackson, who missed four games with a hamstring injury, was supposed to give the run game a lift, but was a non-factor, rushing for 6 yards on 11 carries. The Falcons had 27 yards rushing on 14 carries total.

Ryan was the NFC's offensive player of the week after career-best 148.4 QB rating against the Buccaneers, but struggled against Arizona's constant pressure without starting left tackle Sam Baker due to a knee injury.

Ryan had three interceptions in Atlanta's first six games, but tossed four in the second half against the Cardinals (4-4). Atlanta also gave up four sacks after allowing nine its first six games.

Atlanta's defense allowed Arizona, one of the NFL's worst rushing teams, to gain 201 yards on the ground. Carson Palmer also had an efficient game, overcoming an early interception to throw for 172 yards and a pair of touchdowns on 13-of-18 passing.

''I think everybody across the board - offense, defense and special teams - we all could have done something better to win this football game,'' said Falcons receiver Harry Douglas, who had 12 catches for 121 yards.

Atlanta's problems started with the defense in the first half.

The Falcons had trouble containing Ellington, who started because of Rashard Mendenhall's lingering toe injury, and weren't much better against the pass in the first half.

Larry Fitzgerald, who became the youngest player in NFL history to reach 800 receptions, adjusted to a ball thrown behind him for a 10-yard touchdown.

Ellington followed with an 80-yard touchdown run that he started inside and bounced out after the right side of Atlanta's defense got sealed off and couldn't catch up to him.

The Cardinals ended the half with a 78-yard scoring drive in six plays, capped by Michael Floyd's 15-yard touchdown catch that put them up 21-6.

''Anytime you give up an explosive play on a drive, it's going to lead to points,'' Smith said. ''Today, they led to touchdowns.''

A year ago, Ryan threw a career-high five interceptions against the Cardinals in Atlanta, but the Falcons overcame the mistakes and won 23-19.

Not this time.

Atlanta had to settle for a pair of field goals by Matt Bryant after getting the ball deep in Arizona's end in the first half.

Once the Falcons fell behind, they didn't give themselves much of a chance to come back.

Ryan threw an interception on Atlanta's opening drive of the third quarter when he didn't see linebacker Daryl Washington on a pass intended for Chase Coffman.

The Falcons got a little offensive momentum going later in the quarter, only to have it end when Ryan was sacked and lofted a ball that Rashad Johnson was able to camp under for an interception at Arizona's 23-yard line.

The Falcons' next drive ended with a third straight interception, this one by Tyrann Mathieu on an underthrow to Drew Davis. That set up Jay Feely's second field goal, a 38-yarder that made it 27-6.

Ryan finally got the Falcons into the end zone with a 4-yard touchdown pass and Atlanta recovered an onside kick, giving a brief glimpse of hope. That ended quickly when Ryan tried to heave it downfield under pressure on a fourth-and-20 that Johnson waited under for his second interception.

Ryan finished 34 for 61 for 301 yards and has nine interceptions with one touchdown pass his past two games against Arizona.

''I can't do it,'' Ryan said. ''You can't make those plays and expect your team to win. I have to clean those up. I've got to find a way to make sure those don't happen again.''

NOTES: Ex-Falcon John Abraham, who had a sack, left the game in the second half after a blow to the head but said he should be OK. ... Fitzgerald reached 800 catches in 30 years, 57 days, beating Jason Witten's mark by 181 days.

---

AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org

Fantasy Football Player Notes RSS FeedPLAYER NOTES

Peyton ManningJan 30 12:52p

Denver Broncos QB Peyton Manning may make a decision on whether he plans to return for another season in the near future, according to his dad, Archie Manning. Archie [ More ]

Brandon MarshallJan 30 10:42a

Chicago Bears WR Brandon Marshall may not return to the team in 2015, in the opinion of ESPNChicago.com's Michael C. Wright. The thinking is that Marshall and WR Alshon [ More ]

LeSean McCoyJan 30 02:32a

Philadelphia Eagles RB LeSean McCoy has said he would restructure his contract to lower the $11.95 million cap hit for 2015, but he will not take a pay cut.

Larry FitzgeraldJan 29 05:52p

Arizona Cardinals WR Larry Fitzgerald's new contract should be able to get worked out this offseason, according to team president Michael Bidwill. 'Larry and I have met about it, [ More ]

Earl ThomasJan 29 01:12p

Seattle Seahawks FS Earl Thomas (shoulder) was administered a human growth hormone test by the league Wednesday, Jan. 28, and he believes it was directed at him after he [ More ]

Austin CollieJan 29 03:33a

Free-agent WR Austin Collie (Patriots) signed a contract with the Montreal Alouettes of the Canadian Football League on Wednesday, Jan. 28.

Tom BradyJan 28 12:33p

New England Patriots QB Tom Brady (illness) admitted that he is currently battling a cold, but he said he expects to be 100% ready for the Super Bowl Sunday, [ More ]

Brandon MebaneJan 27 11:23p

Seattle Seahawks DL Brandon Mebane (hamstring) said Tuesday, Jan. 27, that his hamstring surgery went well and he should be full go for the team's offseason program in April.

Richard ShermanJan 27 11:23p

Seattle Seahawks CB Richard Sherman (elbow) has torn ligaments in his elbow, but he is improving daily and he is no longer receiving treatment for the injury.

LeGarrette BlountJan 27 08:33p

New England Patriots RB LeGarrette Blount should be a factor in Super Bowl XLIX against the Seattle Seahawks Sunday, Feb. 1, in the opinion of Boston Herald writer Karen [ More ]

Adrian PetersonJan 27 07:43p

Minnesota Vikings RB Adrian Peterson was directed by NFL commissioner Roger Goodell to meet with a league-assigned psychiatrist following Peterson's suspension. The National Football League Players Association is now [ More ]

Rob GronkowskiJan 27 12:23p

New England Patriots TE Rob Gronkowski is an offensive weapon that the Seattle Seahawks are focused on shutting down during the Super Bowl Sunday, Feb. 1. Seahawks head coach [ More ]

Trent RichardsonJan 27 10:43a

Indianapolis Colts RB Trent Richardson's one-game suspension for conduct detrimental to the team voided the guarantee of a $3,184,062 salary in 2015.

Josh GordonJan 26 02:13p

Cleveland Browns WR Josh Gordon is in Stage Three of an alcohol program, which requires him to be tested for alcohol for a minimum of two years. His failed [ More ]

Rob GronkowskiJan 26 02:03p

New England Patriots TE Rob Gronkowski could cause a problem for the Seattle Seahawks during Super Bowl XLIX, because the Seahawks defense allowed 11 touchdowns to tight ends this [ More ]

Earl ThomasJan 26 02:03p

Seattle Seahawks FS Earl Thomas (shoulder) said he won't miss the Super Bowl against the New England Patriots with a dislocated shoulder, but he also admitted that it won't [ More ]

Odell Beckham Jr.Jan 26 01:52p

New York Giants WR Odell Beckham Jr. (hamstring) said he'll need to shut himself down this offseason in order to enter 2015 fully healthy and in great shape. He [ More ]

Josh GordonJan 26 12:33p

Cleveland Browns WR Josh Gordon tested positive for alcohol, according to sources, and his failed test will subject him to a possible one-year suspension. Gordon caught 24 passes for [ More ]

Vontaze BurfictJan 26 12:23p

Cincinnati Bengals LB Vontaze Burfict (knee) is recovering from microfracture surgery on his left knee, and the surgeon who operated on him is hoping that he will be at [ More ]

Odell Beckham Jr.Jan 26 11:22a

New York Giants WR Odell Beckham Jr. (hamstring) said he played this season with two tears in his right hamstring, which never fully healed.

Josh GordonJan 25 09:12p

Cleveland Browns WR Josh Gordon will be under contract through the 2016 season, and he will only be a restricted free agent after that year due to his looming [ More ]

Josh GordonJan 25 04:12p

Cleveland Browns WR Josh Gordon has reportedly failed another drug test and will be subject to a one-year banishment, according to multiple league sources.

Earl ThomasJan 23 09:02p

Seattle Seahawks FS Earl Thomas (shoulder) will play in the Super Bowl, head coach Pete Carroll said Friday, Jan. 23.

Dennis PittaJan 23 04:22p

Baltimore Ravens TE Dennis Pitta (hip) met with some specialists last week, but the team is not expected to have an update on his status for a few weeks, [ More ]

Johnny ManzielJan 23 01:12p

Cleveland Browns QB Johnny Manziel had a big proponent last year in owner Jimmy Haslam, but Haslam now thinks the team needs a quarterback in order to get their [ More ]

Jimmy GrahamJan 23 10:32a

New Orleans Saints TE Jimmy Graham (shoulder) said he'll rehabilitate his shoulder injury after the Pro Bowl, but he hasn't made a final decision on surgery. 'It's something we [ More ]

Mark IngramJan 22 06:42p

New Orleans Saints RB Mark Ingram, who will be eligible for free agency this offseason, wants to return to the team next year, and he thinks the interest is [ More ]

Vernon DavisJan 22 06:22p

San Francisco 49ers TE Vernon Davis had just two touchdowns in 2014, and they both came in Week 1. He also wasn't targeted at all in the red zone [ More ]

Geno SmithJan 22 05:32p

New York Jets QB Geno Smith has a lot of talent and promise, according to new head coach Todd Bowles. At the same time, Bowles acknowledged that the quarterback [ More ]

Brian HoyerJan 22 04:52p

Cleveland Browns QB Brian Hoyer could be re-signed this offseason, according to his agent. Hoyer is expected to meet with general manager Ray Farmer and offensive coordinator John DeFilippo in the near future.

Johnny ManzielJan 22 02:43p

Cleveland Browns QB Johnny Manziel will be working with a new offensive coordinator this year in John DeFilippo, but DeFilippo is unsure if the team's quarterback next year is [ More ]

Joe FlaccoJan 22 12:52p

Baltimore Ravens QB Joe Flacco will have his fourth difference offensive coordinator in as many years in offensive coordinator Marc Trestman. However, head coach John Harbaugh is confident Flacco [ More ]

RSS Feeds

NFL News:
 
Player Notes:
 
Forum Posts:
 

© 2015 RealTime Fantasy Sports, Inc.
Email Us  ·  Call Us 636.447.1170  ·  Lost Password
Advertising represented by USA Today Sports Media Group