This is an important game in the NFC playoff picture. The Falcons have clinched their division and are looking to secure home field advantage for the duration of the NFC playoffs.
Giants currently have a one game lead in their division and need to finish strong to ensure their spot in the playoffs. This is a "must win" game for the Giants and while it might not be a "must win" for the Falcons on paper, it is a very important game for the psyche of the team and the fanbase. Let's take a look at some notes as we head into the big game.
The Giants have four players who did not practice on Thursday: former Falcon LB Michael Boley, RB Ahmad Bradshaw, S Kenny Phillips and CB Prince Amukamara. They also had two players who were limited in WR Hakeem Nicks and DE Jason Pierre-Paul. For the Falcons, S William Moore and WR Roddy White did not practice and White is being called a "game time decision". It has also been noted that it is really tough to keep Roddy out of a game so I would expect him to play even if his snaps are limited. Four Falcons were limited in practice on Thursday: WR Harry Douglas and CB Asante Samuel.
Peeking Across Enemy Lines
So where are the Gmen right now? At 8-5, they are still in control of their own fate. They need to win out. RGIII (barring a positive MRI) is lighting up the Skins. One game at a time for the Giants. Beat ATL in Atlanta. Everyone says that ATL is vulnerable, and I am not buying their stock either. They haven't shown the ability to beat the best teams, especially in January. So next Sunday will be a good test for both teams. Because the Giants were sloppy enough earlier this season, they lost games they could have and should have won. Now they need to win a few games they can lose.
It's always interesting to see a take from an opposing team and that is the take from the NY Giants blog Ultimate NYG. They don't buy into the Falcons. I can't see as they blame them as they took us out rather easily in the playoffs last year. Thanks, Mike Mularkey. As I said earlier this game is a must win for the Giants and that's how the Giants fans are treating this game and you should expect the players to do the same.
Catching Up With the Falcons
Congratulations to Matt Bosher for being named the team "Man of the Year". The punter is generally a thankless position unless you screw up and then everybody wants your head. In this case, Bosher is making his rounds in the community and we thank him for his service.
Under Mike Smith, following a loss the Falcons are 19-3. I like those odds.
The Falcon Wing says Todd McClure, Dunta Robinson and Matt Ryan are the three Falcons that need to step up the rest of the way.
The Atlanta Field Report takes a look at whether the Atlanta offense has become too conservative.
Get more great Atlanta Falcons news and analysis over at The Grits Blitz.