- 2008 Atlanta Falcons season
team = Atlanta Falcons
year = 2008
record = 3-2
division_place = TBD
coach = Mike Smith
playoffs = TBDThe 2008
Atlanta Falconsseason is the 43rd season for the team in the National Football League. The Falcons will be trying to improve from their 4-12 season in 2007.
January 23, 2008, the Falcons announced that Jacksonville Jaguars defensive coordinatorMike Smith, would be the head coachin 2008. [ [http://sports.espn.go.com/nfl/news/story?id=3211259 Falcons hire Mike Smith] ]
Paul Boudreauoffensive line coach
Chris Scelfotight ends coach and Paul Dunnassistant offensive line coach
Keith Armstrongspecial teams coordinator, Jeff Fishstrength and conditioning coach, Bill Hughanassistant strength and conditioning coach and retrained Tom McMahonas assistant special teams coach
Terry Robiskieoffensive coordinator, Ray Hamiltondefensive line coach, Gerald Brownrunning backs coach and Glenn Thomasoffensive quality control coach
Mike Mularkeyoffensive coordinator
Emmitt Thomasassistant head coach, Bill Musgravequarterbacks coach and Brian VanGorderdefensive coordinator
*23 Named Mike Smith head coach
*16 Defensive coordinator
Mike Zimmersigned to same position with Cincinnati Bengals
*13 Named former Patriots director of college scouting
Thomas Dimitroffas new general manager
*13 Announced a 17-month extension of contract of team president
*8 Signed DE
Willie Evansto reserve/futures contract February
*29 Re-signed QB
*15 Released TE
Alge Crumpler, QB Byron Leftwich, T Wayne Gandy, CB Lewis Sanders, WR Jamin Elliott, LB Marcus Wilkinsand DT Rod Coleman.
*11 Waived WR
*9 Assistant General Manager
Billy Devaneynamed Executive Vice President of Player Personnel for the St. Louis Rams
Alvin Reynoldsdefensive backs coach
*5 Re-signed free agent TE
Joe Dannadefensive quality control coach March
*24 Retained exclusive rights to DT
*21 Signed free agent K
*20 Traded CB
DeAngelo Hallto Oakland for a second-round pick in 2008 and a fifth-round pick in 2009
*19 Retained exclusive rights to T
*14 Signed free agent TE
*12 Re-signed QB
*10 Signed free agent C
*10 Signed free agent DT
*7 Signed free agents DT
Rashad Moore, DT Kindal Mooreheadand DE Simon Fraser
*5 Released QB Joey Harrington
*3 Released RB
*2 Agreed to terms with free agent TE
Ben Hartsockand RB Michael Turner
*1 Agreed to terms with free agent S
Erik Colemanand CB Von Hutchins April
*29 Signed free agents WR
Chandler Williamsand DB Nick Turnbull
*28 Signed undrafted free agents LB
Isaac Brown( Central Michigan University), P Jimmie Kaylor( Colorado State University), CB Glenn Sharpe(Miami, Fla.), FS D.J. Wolfe( Oklahoma University), DE Brandon Miller( Georgia University), RB Jamar Brittingham( Bloomsburg University) and T Michael Butterworth( Slippery Rock University)
*27 Drafted CB
Chevis Jackson(R3-68 overall), WR Harry Douglas(R3-84 overall), S Thomas DeCoud(R3-98 overall) LB Robert James(R5-138), LB Kroy Biermann(R5-154 overall), RB Thomas Brown(R6-172 overall), CB Wilrey Fontenot(R7-212 overall) and TE Keith Zinger(R7-232 overall) in the 2008 NFL Draft
*26 Drafted QB
Matt Ryan(R1-3 overall), OT Sam Baker(R1-21 overall) and LB Curtis Lofton(R2-37 overall) in the 2008 NFL Draft
*26 Traded two second round choices (#34 and #48 overall) and a fourth round choice (#103) to the
Washington Redskinsfor a first round choice (#21 overall), a third round choice (#84 overall) and a fifth round choice (#154 overall)
*24 Signed free agent K
Kevin Lovell May
*23 Waived SS
*22 Waived P
*21 Signed free agent TE
*20 Agreed to contract terms with QB Matt Ryan (first-round draft choice)
*19 Released LB
Earl Everettand DB Nick Turnbulland signed WR Tony Gonzalez (wide receiver), S Eric Brockand S Jamal Lewis June
*26 Signed Draft pick DE
*23 Released C
*20 - Released OT
Michael Butterworth, DE Derrick Jones, S Jamal Lewis and OL Kurt Quarterman
*20 Agreed to contract terms with Draft pick WR
*20 Agreed to contract terms with veteran free agent S
*18 Signed Draft pick RB
*17 Released DB
Jimmy Williamsand signed Draft pick Wilrey Fontenot
*10 Signed Draft picks CB
Chevis Jacksonand S Thomas DeCoud
*10 Waived TE
*7 Signed Draft pick, TE
Keith Zingerto a four-year contract July
*26 Signed Draft picks T
*25 Signed CB
Blue Adams, LB Coy Wireand OL Michael Butterworth, waived CB Glenn Sharpeand OL Pat McCoy, reached an injury settlement with LB Travis Williams, placed DT Trey Lewison the active/non-football injury list and placed T Renardo Fosterand the physically unable to perform list
*25 Signed Draft pick LB
Georgia ForceHead Coach Doug PlankFalcons coaching assistant
*15 Signed Draft pick LB
*18 Released WR
Tony Gonzalez (wide receiver) August
*31 Claimed DT
Jason Jeffersonoff waivers, released DT Tim Andersonand signed TE Keith Zinger, WR Eric Weems, OL D’Anthony Batiste, DB Glenn Sharpe, DB Eric Brockand DE Brandon Millerto the practice squad.
*30 Waived OL D’Anthony Batiste, S Eric Brock, OL Michael Butterworth, S Deke Cooper, C Doug Datish, DE
Willie Evans, QB Joey Harrington, CB Wilrey Fontenot, OL Kynan Forney, DE Brandon Miller, DT Rashad Moore, OL Terrance Pennington, LB Mickey Pimentel, TE Marcus Pollard, CB Glenn Sharpe, DT Montavious Stanley, S Daren Stone, LB Cameron Vaughn, WR Eric Weems, WR Chandler Williams, TE Keith Zinger and placed RB Thomas Brownon injured reserve
*26 Placed DT
Trey Lewison the reserve-non football injury list and T Renardo Foster on the reserve-physically unable to perform list
*24 Released TE George Cooper and signed TE
*19 Released WR
Joe Hornand waived/injured LB Isaac Brown
*11 Waived/injured TE
*7 Signed C
Doug Datishand waived K Kevin Lovell
*6 Signed LB
Mickey Pimenteland placed LB Robert Jameson injured reserve
*4 Released RB
Jamar Brittinghamand signed TE George Cooper
Week 1: vs. Detroit Lions
Georgia Dome, Atlanta, Georgia"
* Game time: 1:00 PM EDT
* Game weather: None (Domed Stadium)
* Game attendance: 62,310
* TV announcers: (FOX):
Matt Vasgersian, J.C. Pearson, & Nischelle Turner
The Falcons began their 2008 campaign at home against the
Detroit Lions. In the first quarter, Atlanta immediately took flight at rookie QB Matt Ryan throws his first career NFL pass to WR Michael Jenkinsfor a 62-yard TD pass. Afterwards, RB Michael Turner (acquired from the Chargers) made an immediate impact as he got a 66-yard TD run and a 5-yard TD run. In the second quarter, the Lions would respond with RB Kevin Smith getting a 5-yard TD run, while QB Jon Kitnacompleted a 21-yard TD pass to WR Roy Williams.
In the third quarter, the Falcons went back to work as kicker
Jason Elamgot a 50-yard field goal, while RB Jerious Norwoodgot a 10-yard TD run. Detroit would try to rally as Kitna completed a 1-yard TD pass to TE Casey FitzSimmons. Fortunately, Atlanta closed out their rout in the fourth quarter with Elam nailing a 25-yard field goal.
With the impressive win, the Falcons began their season at 1-0.
QB Matt Ryan would have a good rookie debut completing 9 of 13 passes for 161 yards and a touchdown. RB
Michael Turnerhad an outstanding Falcon debut, setting a single-game franchise record with 220 rushing yards. Ryan, who became the first rookie to start a season for the Falcons since Steve Bartkowskiin 1975, finished with a solid 161 passing yards and 137.0 quarterback rating. Turner led a ground game that picked up a franchise-record 318 rushing yards 7.6 yards per carry.Game Notes.
*With a 34-21 victory, Mike Smith earned his first win as a Head Coach in the NFL
*Following a 44-41 victory over the
Seattle Seahawksin the 2007 season finale, the Falcons opened the 2008 campaign with 34 points en route to a victory, posting back-to-back games with over 30 points.
*The win over Detroit gave the Falcons their first season opening win since 2006 (20-6 vs. Carolina), their first season opening win at the Georgia Dome since 2005 (vs. Philadelphia, 14-10) and their first win against the Lions at home since 2002 (36-15).
*By opening the game as a starter, LB
Keith Brookingextended his consecutive games starting streak to 113 games, dating back to 2000, which moves him past long-time C Jeff Van Noteinto second place all-time in Falcons history. Former T Bob Whitfieldholds the record with 123 consecutive starts (from Wk 1, 1993 – Wk 11, 2000).
Todd McClurealso extended his consecutive games starting streak to 97-straight games to move past DE Patrick Kerneyand WR Terance Mathisinto fifth place all-time in that category.
* The Falcons had 10 players earn opening day starts for the first time in their NFL careers. The players lining up as starters for the first time today included: QB Matt Ryan, LT
Sam Baker, RB Michael Turner, TE Ben Hartsock, RG Harvey Dahl, RT Tyson Clabo, DT Jonathan Babineaux, MLB Curtis Lofton, CB Brent Grimesand CB Chris Houston.
Curtis Loftonbecame the first rookie to man the middle of the Falcons defense on opening day since linebacker Buddy Curryin 1980. Ironically, it was exactly 28 years ago to this date, September 7, 1980, that Curry (the team’s second round draft pick) started in the middle of the Falcons defense (at Minnesota, 8 tackles, 0.5 sack).
*The Falcons broke a team rushing record with 318 yards and 7.4 avg. against Detroit. The previous record was set on
September 17, 2006against Tampa Bay with 306 yards. Atlanta’s 318 yards marked the first game Atlanta totaled over 200 rushing yards since December 3, 2006 against Washington getting 256 yards.
*On Atlanta’s first offensive possession of the 2008 season, the Falcons recorded a three-play 74-yard drive that was capped off by a WR
Michael Jenkins62-yard touchdown reception from rookie QB Matt Ryan, his first career NFL pass.
Matt Ryanbecame the first quarterback to throw a touchdown on his first career NFL pass since October 8, 2000when Michael Bishopcompleted the feat as member of the New England Patriots.
Michael Jenkins62-yard touchdown reception was the longest of his career and the longest touchdown pass recorded by the Falcons since December 23, 2007when Chris Redmancompleted a 74-touchdown against Arizona.
*Atlanta’s 62-yard touchdown to WR
Michael Jenkinson the first offensive possession of the game was the longest touchdown pass for the Falcons on opening day since September 3, 2000, when Chris Chandlercompleted a 48-yard touchdown in a 36-28 win.
*The last time the Falcons scored a touchdown on their opening offensive possession of a game came against the
Carolina Pantherson November 11, 2007. Atlanta won the game 20-13.
*On Atlanta’s second possession of the game, RB
Michael Turnerrushed for a 66-yard touchdown to give the Falcons a 14-0 lead. The 66-yard scamper is the fourth-longest rush in Turner’s career and the seventh-longest rush in Falcons history.
*Michael Turner’s 117 rushing yards in the first quarter are the most in an opening quarter of a game for the Falcons in at least two decades.
*Atlanta’s 216 yards of total offense in the first quarter is also the highest total in over two decades. The previous high for the Falcons came on
October 13, 1991with 172 yards against San Francisco.
*The Falcons 21 points in the first quarter marked the fifth time in team history Atlanta posted that total in the opening period. The last time it happened came on
November 23, 2003against Tennessee.
*On Atlanta’s second offensive possession of the second half, the Falcons drove 68 yards on five plays for their fourth touchdown of the game. The drive was highlighted by a Matt Ryan 46-yard pass to WR
Roddy Whiteand a 10-yard touchdown run by RB Jerious Norwood.
Jerious Norwoodfinished the day with 14 carries for 93 yards while logging his first touchdown since October 15, 2007. Norwood’s 93 rushing yards are the most in a game for the three-year veteran since December 2, 2007at St. Louis.
*In the last two seasons, the Falcons scored a combined total of 16 rushing touchdowns. Against the Lions, Atlanta posted three rushing scores.
John Abrahamposted his first three-sack day since 2004after dropping Lions QB Jon Kitnaonce in the first quarter and twice in the final period of play. Abraham now has 70.5 career sacks, 11 of which have come on opening day. Abraham’s last three-sack day came on October 10, 2004as a member of the New York Jets.
Lawyer Milloyhalted Detroit’s first offensive drive of the second half when he recorded his 25th career interception. Milloy returned the pick 38 yards inside Lions territory, which led to a Falcons field goal and a 24-14 lead.
Jason Elamsplit the uprights on both of his field goal attempts, his first two in a Falcons uniform. The 16-year veteran extended his streak of consecutive field goals to 17 and also notched his 38th field goal of 50-plus yards at the 9:45 mark in the third quarter.
Michael Turnerran for 220 yards in his debut with the Falcons. This marks the highest single-game rushing record for the Falcons, formerly held by Gerald Riggs, who set the previous record of 202 rushing yards on September 2, 1984.
Week 2: at Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Raymond James Stadium, Tampa, Florida"
* Game time: 4:05 PM EDT
* Game weather: 89°F (Partly Cloudy)
* Game attendance: 63,611
* TV announcers: (FOX):
Ron Pitts, Tony Boselli, & Nischelle Turner
Following their outstanding home win over the Lions, the Falcons flew to
Raymond James Stadiumfor a Week 2 NFC South duel with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. In the first quarter, Atlanta trailed as Bucs QB Brian Griesecompleted a 5-yard TD pass to TE John Gilmore. In the second quarter, the Falcons continued to trail as former Falcons RB Warrick Dunngave Tampa Bay a 17-yard TD run, along with kicker Matt Bryantgetting a 33-yard field goal. Atlanta would close out the half with kicker Jason Elamgetting a 32-yard field goal.
In the third quarter, the Falcons crept closer as Elam kicked a 27-yard field goal. In the fourth quarter, Atlanta tried to rally as Elam nailed a 24-yard field goal. However, the Buccaneers pulled away as RB
Earnest Grahamgot a 68-yard TD run.
With the loss, the Falcons fell to 1-1.
* The Falcons defense allowed Tampa Bay to rush for only two yards in the first quarter on six attempts. The Buccaneers two yards is the lowest total for a Falcons opponent in the first quarter of a game since
December 14, 2003when the Indianapolis Coltsposted two rushing yards on seven carries. At the end of the first half, Tampa’s rushing total was 36 yards, the lowest total for a Falcons opponent in the first half of play since December 31, 2006when Philadelphia only managed 34 yard in the first two quarters.
Matt Ryanled the Falcons on a 13-play, 75-yard scoring drive in the third quarter, which was capped by a Jason Elam27-yard field goal. Ryan completed six of seven passes on the drive for 62 yard.
* On his second career carry, wide receiver
Harry Douglastook an end-around and rushed for 33 yards to give the Falcons their third first down of the game. The 33-yard scamper is the second longest rush for Atlanta in two games this season.
* With two minutes remaining in the second quarter, wide receiver/punt returner
Adam Jenningsset a career-high with a 37-yard punt return topping his old mark of 23 yards set in 2007. The return was also the longest for the Falcons since Allen Rossumreturned a punt 37 yards against Cleveland on November 12, 2006. Jennings’ punt return led to a Falcons 32-yard field goal by Elam, the first points of the game for Atlanta.
* Elam notched three field goals of 32, 27 and 25 yards to extend his streak of splitting the uprights to 20 consecutive kicks.
* Atlanta defensive tackle
Jonathan Babineauxdropped Buccaneers quarterback Brian Griesein the third quarter for his 5.5th career sack. The sack led to a Tampa Bay punt on its first offensive possession of the second half. Three of Babineaux’s 5.5 career sacks have come in the first two games of a season (2.0 in 2007, 1.0 in 2008).
* Falcons defensive end
John Abrahamposted his fourth sack of the season and his sixth in three consecutive games when he dropped Griese in the fourth quarter to stall a Buccaneers drive in the red zone. On the sack, Abraham forced a fumble which was recovered by defensive tackle Jason Jefferson. The sack is Abraham’s 14th in the last 17 games and the 71.5th of his career. The fumble recovery by Jefferson was the first of his career.
* Following Abraham’s fourth quarter sack, the Falcons have now recorded three consecutive games with at least two sacks dating back to the 2007 season finale against the
* Head Coach Mike Smith is one for one in challenges after challenging the spot of the ball on a
Roddy Whitereception in the third quarter. After the review the officials determined White had reached the first down marker, which kept the Atlanta drive alive.
Week 3: vs. Kansas City Chiefs
Georgia Dome, Atlanta, Georgia"
* Game time: 1:00 PM EDT
* Game weather: Played Indoors, Domed Stadium
* Game attendance: 63,611
* TV announcers: (CBS): Gus Johnson, &
Steve Tasker Michael Turnerran for three touchdowns and the Atlanta Falconsscored the first 24 points to beat Kansas City 38-14, giving the Chiefs their 12th straight loss.
Turner had scoring runs of 4, 1 and 2 yards, his first career game with three rushing touchdowns, while leading the Falcons with 104 yards rushing.
Jerious Norwoodadded 75 yards rushing.
Turner's 1-yard scoring run in the second quarter gave Atlanta a 24-0 lead.
Tyler Thigpen, the third starting quarterback in three weeks for Kansas City , threw three interceptions in his first career start. The third interception, by cornerback Chris Houston, was returned 10 yards for a touchdown with 1:01 left in the game.
Herman Edwardssaid during the week he would turn to veteran Damon Huardif Thigpen struggled. Thigpen played the full game and was 14-for-36 passing for 128 yards with one touchdown.
The Chiefs' 12th straight loss came on the 11-month anniversary of their last win. They lost their last nine games in 2007 after a 12-10 win at Oakland on Oct. 21, 2007.
The Falcons moved to 2-0 at the
Georgia Domeon the season and gave Head Coach Mike Smith his second career win as a head coach Michael Turnerbecame only the fifth Falcons running back in team history to register three or more touchdowns in a game.
Week 4: at Carolina Panthers
Bank of America Stadium, Charlotte, North Carolina"
* Game time: 1:00 PM EST
* Game weather: 78°F (Partly Cloudy)
* Game attendance: 72,688
* TV announcers (FOX):
Ron Pitts, Tony Boselli, & Charissa Thompson
Coming off their home win over the Chiefs, the Falcons flew to
Bank of America Stadiumfor a Week 4 NFC South duel with the Carolina Panthers. The Falcons found a way to stick around for three quarters in Sunday game at Bank of America Stadiumbut injuries, dropped passes and untimely penalties filled the afternoon. Atlanta lost starting strong safety Lawyer Milloyin the first half after he took a shot to the ribs and played the entire game without starting left tackle Sam Baker. In the first quarter, Atlanta trailed early as Panthers RB Jonathan Stewartgetting an 8-yard TD run. The Falcons responded with kicker Jason Elamgetting a 33-yard field goal. In the second quarter, the Falcons crept closer as Elam kicked a 44-yard field goal. However, Carolina answered with QB Jake Delhommecompleting a 56-yard TD pass to WR Steve Smith. Atlanta closed out the half with Elam getting a 44-yard field goal. The Panthers (3-1, 1-0) lost starting offensive tackles Jordan Grossand Jeff Otahin the game to injury and also went several series without starting cornerback Ken Lucas. But that didn't stop the NFC Southleaders from imposing their will on both sides of the ball and put up more than 400 yards of total offense.
In the third quarter, the Panthers increased their lead with kicker
John Kasaynailing a 44-yard field goal. In the fourth quarter, Carolina sealed the win with Delhomme completing a 36-yard TD pass to WR Muhsin Muhammad. The first-year head coach Mike Smith made a concise list in explaining the problems that plagued his offense in Charlotte.
*Third down conversions (the Falcons were 2-of-13)
*Red zone penalties (two knocked the Birds outside the 10)
*six dropped passes(three on third down)
With the loss, the Falcons fell to 2-2.
*Falcons running back
Jason Snellingearned his first career start while tight end Justin Peellestarted his first game in a Falcons uniform.
Jason Elamsplit the uprights on three field goals attempts in the first half. His last field goal of the first half was a 44-yard kick, which cut the Panthers lead to 14-9. Elam extended his current field goal streak to 24 consecutive kicks and his three successful kicks in the first half mark the 10th occasion that the veteran kicker has made three or more field goals in the first half of a game in his career.
*For the fourth consecutive game this season, the Falcons defense held their opponent to 16 rushing yards or less in the first quarter of play after the Panthers managed only 16 yards on six carries.
*Falcons defensive end
John Abrahamblocked his first career punt in the second quarter, which led to Elam’s second field goal of the day. The blocked punt was the first for Atlanta since the 2004 season finale when Demorrio Williamsblocked Seattle’s first kick of the game at Qwest Field.
Jerious Norwoodposted his second longest rush of the season with a 40-yard scamper in the second quarter. The rush was four yards shy of his season high (44), which he set against Kansas City Chiefsin Week 3. Norwood has now posted five rushes of 40 yards or more in this three-year career.
Michael Koenenbooted his longest punt of the season with a 60-yard kick in the second quarter. The punt is the longest for Koenen since December 16, 2007when he nailed a 63-yard punt against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
*Falcons wide receiver
Brian Finnerancaught his first pass of the 2008 campaign on a five-yard reception in the second quarter. The catch was the first for Finneran since the 2005 season finale when he caught four passes for 45 yards against the Carolina Panthers.
Wide receiver Roddy Whiteled the Falcons in receiving with seven catches for 90 yards. He continues to remain on pace for a 1,000-yard season.
*In his fourth career start, rookie quarterback
Matt Ryancompleted passes to eight different receivers, a season-high for the Boston Collegegraduate. Ryan finished the game having completed 21 of 41 passes for 158 yards and a 60.8 passer rating.
Week 5: at Green Bay Packers
Lambeau Field, Green Bay, Wisconsin"
* Game time: 1:00 PM EST
* Game weather: 60°F (Sunny)
* Game attendance: 70,610
* TV announcers (FOX):
Ron Pitts, Tony Boselli, & Charissa Thompson
Hoping to rebound from their divisional road loss to the Panthers, to Falcons flew to
Lambeau Fieldfor a Week 5 duel with the Green Bay Packers. In the first quarter, Atlanta took flight as rookie QB Matt Ryan completed a 1-yard TD pass to TE Justin Peelle, along with kicker Jason Elamgetting a 42-yard field goal. In the second quarter, the Packers responded with QB Aaron Rodgerscompleting a 44-yard TD pass to WR Donald Driver. The Falcons closed out the half with Ryan completing a 22-yard TD pass to WR Roddy White.
In the third quarter, Green Bay answered with kicker
Mason Crosbygetting a 50-yard field goal. In the fourth quarter, the Packers tied the game with Rodgers completing a 25-yard TD pass to WR Greg Jennings, yet Atlanta replied with Elam nailing a 41-yard field goal and RB Michael Turnergetting a 2-yard TD run. Green Bay tried to rally as Rodgers completed a 4-yard TD pass to TE Donald Lee, yet the Falcons' defense stiffened for the win.
With the win, Atlanta improved to 3-2.
*An Atlanta 27-24 victory gave the Falcons their first win on the road this season and their first victory at
Lambeau Fieldsince 2002 NFC Wild Card playoff.
*On Atlanta’s first play of the game,
Quarterback Matt Ryancompleted a 37-yard pass to wide receiver Roddy Whitecrossing into Packers territory. Ryan completed two more receptions to White on the drive for a total of 64 yards. The three completions led to an Atlanta touchdown, which marked the second occasion this season the Falcons scored on their first drive of the game Week 1 vs. Detroit Lionsand the first time they scored on their first possession of the game on the road.
*The Falcons posted a touchdown on their first offensive possession of the game when Ryan led the team 81 yards on 10 plays and completed a one-yard touchdown strike to tight end
Justin Peelle, his first as an Atlanta Falcon and the eighth of his career.
*Ryan started the game having completed six of six passes for 72 yards and one touchdown pass.
*Ryan compiled the best half of football in his rookie career thus far when he completed 13 of 18 passes for 154 yards, two touchdowns and no interceptions for a 135.0 passer rating. Ryan finished the game with a season-high 194 passing yards.
*On Atlanta first play at the start of the fourth quarter, Ryan rushed for his longest career gain with a 17-yard scamper on third down.
*Entering Week 5, the Falcons led the league in first quarter scoring with 38 points. Atlanta added to that total with 10 points on a touchdown and field goal. The Falcons have also outscored their opponents in the first quarter by a 48-14 margin.
*Following the first quarter of play the Falcons recorded eight first downs opposed to the Packers who finished the opening 15 minutes of play with zero. Atlanta also racked-up 147 net yards to Green Bay’s 10 in the quarter.
*White contributed with 67 first quarter receiving yards, falling three yards short of his career-high in the first 15 minutes of play 70, which he set on September 21, 2008 against Kansas City. White also finished the first half with 132 yards, which is the most in two quarters of play for the four-year veteran in his career and the second highest total since
Terance Mathisposted 136 on November 19, 1995.
*At the 6:02 mark in the second quarter, Ryan tallied his second touchdown pass of the day when he found White in the end zone for a 22-yard strike to give the Falcons a 17-7 advantage. The catch was his sixth of the day giving White 115 yards in the first half at that point.
*White pieced together his second 100-yard receiving game of the season and the ninth of his career after catching eight passes for 132 yards and one touchdown.
Running back Michael Turnerposted his third 100-yard game of the season after finishing with 26 carries for 121 yards and one touchdown. Turner’s score came at the 3:35 mark in the fourth quarter to give Atlanta a two-possession lead (27-17) which sealed the victory.
Ovie Mughellicarried the ball nine yards on his first rush of the season in the fourth quarter.
Grady Jacksonlogged his first sack of the season and the 34.5th of his career when he dropped Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgerson Green Bay first offensive play of the game. The sack led to a Green Bay punt.
*Following the two-minute mark in the second quarter, defensive end
John Abrahamnotched his seventh sack of the season, dropping Rodgers. The sack is the ninth in his last six games, the 17th in his last 20 contests and the 74.5th of his career. The sack forced a Packers field goal attempt and following an offensive holding call on a converted attempt, Green Bay missed a re-kick.
Michael Boleyintercepted his first pass of the season and the fifth of his career when he stepped in from of an Aaron Rodgerspass late in the fourth quarter. The INT led to the game-sealing touchdown by Turner.
Ben Wilkersonsaw his first action of the season at the center position when he briefly replaced Todd McClureon Atlanta first offensive drive of the game. Wilkerson was at center when the Falcons scored their first touchdown in the first quarter.
Jason Elamsplit the uprights on his first field goal attempt of the game from 42 yards and gave Atlanta a 10-0 lead in the first quarter. Elam second kick of 41 yards at the 7:19 mark in the four quarter was also good, giving the Falcons a 20-17 lead. The second field goal marked his 26th consecutive kick.
*Following a Packers touchdown to tie the game at 17, running back/kick returner
Jerious Norwoodreturned the ensuing kickoff 54 yards into Green Bay territory, marking the second-longest kickoff return of his career. Norwood’s return set up a Falcons game-sealing touchdown.
Week 6: vs. Chicago Bears
Georgia Dome, Atlanta, Georgia"
* Game time: 1:00 PM EDT
* Game weather: None (Domed Stadium)
* TV announcers (FOX):
Thom Brennaman& Brian Billick
* Game attendance:
2008 NFL DraftResults
*1st round(3)-Matt Ryan,
Quarterback, Boston College
*1st round(21)-Sam Baker,
offensive tackle, University of Southern California
Curtis Lofton, linebacker, University of Oklahoma
Chevis Jackson, cornerback, Louisiana State University
Harry Douglas, wide receiver, University of Louisville
Thomas DeCoud, safety, University of California
*5th round(138)-Robert James, linebacker,
Arizona State University(IR)
Kroy Biermann, linebacker, University of Montana
*6th round(172)-Thomas Brown,
running back, University of Georgia(IR)
Wilrey Fontenot, cornerback, University of Arizona(no longer with the team)
Keith Zinger, tight end, Louisiana State University (practice squad)
* [http://www.atlantafalcons.com/News/Draft_Central/Draft_2008.aspx Falcons draft central]
* [http://www.atlantafalcons.com/News/Articles/2008/04/NFL_Draft/Falcons_select_quarterback_Matt_Ryan.aspx Falcons select Matt Ryan]
* [http://www.atlantafalcons.com/News/Articles/2008/04/NFL_Draft/Falcons_trade_up_select_Baker.aspx Falcons pick USC Tackle Baker]
* [http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X_x4WvWEJO4 Lofton highligts]
* [http://www.atlantafalcons.com/News/Articles/2008/04/NFL_Draft/Sunday_Press_Conference_042708.aspx First round picks introductions]
* [http://es.youtube.com/watch?v=Igq8fLhwI9s Chevis Jackson highlights]
* [http://www.sportsline.com/nfl/teams/stats/ATL Falcons Player stats]
Notes and references
2. [http://www.atlantafalcons.com/News/Articles/2008/08/Preseason_Week_1/Falcons_Jaguars_Game_Story.aspx Birds fall but Ryan solid in preseason debut]
3. [http://www.atlantafalcons.com/News/Articles/2008/08/Preseason_Week_2/Falcons_Colts_Game_Story.aspx Turner's runs christen new-look Georgia Dome]
4. [http://www.atlantafalcons.com/News/Articles/2008/08/Preseason_Week_3/Falcons_Titans_Game_Story.aspx Falcons get victory in Ryan's first start]
5. [http://www.atlantafalcons.com/News/Articles/2008/08/Preseason_Week_4/Falcons_Ravens_Game_Story.aspx Reserves lead Falcons to victory in Baltimore]
6. [http://www.atlantafalcons.com/News/Articles/2008/09/Week_1/Falcons_Lions_Game_Story.aspx Turner leads Falcons to the victory against Detroit]
7. [http://www.atlantafalcons.com/News/Articles/2008/09/Week_2/Falcons_Bucs_Game_Story.aspx Birds stumble against NFC South rival]
8. [http://www.atlantafalcons.com/News/Articles/2008/09/1120/Young_teams_to_square_off_Sunday_at_Georgia_Dome.aspx ATL-KC Preview]
9. [http://www.atlantafalcons.com/News/Articles/2008/09/11-20/Smith_on_Lawyer_Milloy_091508.aspx Smith discusses about Milloy situation]
10. [http://life.atlantafalcons.com/index.php?autocom=blog&blogid=4&showentry=272 Smith Addresses Milloy Arrest]
11. [http://www.sportsline.com/nfl/gamecenter/preview/NFL_20080928_ATL@CAR ATL-CAR Preview]
12. [http://www.atlantafalcons.com/News/Articles/2008/09/Week_3/Falcons_Chiefs_Game_Story.aspx Falcons-Chiefs Game recap]
* [http://www.atlantafalcons.com/?homepage=true atlantafalcons.com]
* [http://www.sportsline.com/nfl/teams/page/ATL Falcons at CBS Sportsline]
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