Found September 07, 2013 on
Fox Sports Southwest:
New Orleans Saints
St. Louis Rams
The Atlanta Falcons have added 13 rookies to their squad: seven draft choices and six free agents. But it's a long-time veteran addition that might prove the most problematic for the Saints Sunday.
The Falcons have a locked and loaded team already don't forget they narrowly missed out on playing in the Super Bowl last year. Returning are key weapons like quarterback Matt Ryan, tight end Tony Gonzalez, plus receivers Roddy White and Julio Jones.
Now,Atlantahas added a powerful, speedy threat to their backfield inSteven Jackson formerly of the St. Louis Rams.
"He's a big powerful back," Saints quarterback Drew Brees said. "He's hard to bring down.He's hard to tackle.I just think he brings a physical element to any offense.So that's a big pickup for them."
Jackson is making his regular season debut forAtlantaafter posting eight 1,000-yard-plus seasons. That's tied for the fourth-longest streak in the NFL.
Expect the Falcons to useJacksonas a critical part of their attack against the Saints out in the flat. Atlantaseems to be expecting to have some success withJacksonwhen he's going against the Saints' outside linebackers especially. Saints linebacker Martez Wilson warns that's premature.
"We've got to get to him as fast as we can," Wilson said. "Gang tackle him and grab onto any moving part and just stop his momentum."
Saints defensive coordinator Rob Ryan says Atlanta's offensive skill players test a secondary as much as any team east of Denver.
"They are a great challenge," Ryan said. "They can throw it, and they can run it. We have to be at our best, and we plan on being that."
Ryan perceives Jackson as a dual threat, and that has kept his mind whirling this week.
"I think he's also an excellent receiver," Ryan said. "I think that would be the one redeeming quality he has over Michael Turner. Both of them are hard runners, both of them are premier power backs. I think that would be the only difference."
DuringJackson's last three games against the Saints when he was with the Rams, he rushed for 386 yards on 67 carries, scoring three touchdowns.He also caught 17 passes. Saints defensive end CamJordanremembersJacksonwell from their meeting in St. Louis his rookie season.
"That's definitely going to add some power to their rush," Jordan said. "He's definitely one of the better running backs I've faced. I certainly remember his speed, agility and power. There aren't too many running backs made like him. They're definitely going to have an improved running game. We've got toget in the backfield before he can get off. We have to disrupt the O-Line."
Jacksonended last season with 1,042 yards rushing and four touchdowns for the Rams, but he was unhappy inSt. Louis. he Rams allowedJacksonto void the final year of his six-year contract this past February, paving the way for him to sign a new three-year deal with the Falcons.
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Here's a capsule preview of the Atlanta Falcons' 2013 season, a much-anticipated campaign full of Super Bowl promise.
Three Things To Know
1. Replacing Michael Turner with Steven Jackson will make a huge difference
Last season, the Falcons ranked 29th in net rushing yards per game, as Turner, who finished third in the MVP voting in 2008, fell off a proverbial cliff with...
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White figured to play a...
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The Atlanta Falcons have released their actives and inactives for Sunday’s game against the New Oreleans Saints.
Wide receiver Roddy White will try to play though a high ankle sprain in the Falcons season opener. How effective the 31-year-old will be remains to be seen but he will at-least start for the Falcons.
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The 2013 season began for the Atlanta Falcons much the way their previous campaign ended: Coming up short on fourth down inside its opponents' 10-yard line with quarterback Matt Ryan under pressure.In January, the opponent was San Francisco and the failure to convert cost the Falcons a chance to advance to the Super Bowl. Eight months later, it was their most-hated foe, the New...
Just like last season, Matt Ryan had the Atlanta Falcons achingly close to a late go-ahead touchdown against New Orleans at the Superdome. Once again, they could not finish the deal.
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The Falcons have scratched starting cornerback Asante Samuel for Sunday's season opener against the New Orleans Saints.
Samuel had been listed as questionable with a right thigh injury. He's been replaced in the starting lineup by Robert McClain.
Meanwhile, the Saints deactivate newly re-acquired receiver Robert Meachem and outside linebacker Martez Wilson. Wilson did not...
According to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Falcons receiver Roddy White (ankle) is questionable for Week 1.Fantasy Spin:White suffered a minor ankle sprain in the second preseason game and should be fine to play despite the questionable tag. He has played in 128 of 128 over his eight-year career. Make sure he's in your lineup Sunday against the Saints.
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Moose Johnston is dripping with sexual innuendo today during the Falcons-Saints game.
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Saints nose tackle Broderick Bunkley has left New Orleans' regular-season opener against the Falcons with a lower right leg injury.
The Saints have announced that his return is questionable.
Bunkley appeared to be tangled up on a short running play in which Steven Jackson gained 3 yards deep in Saints territory.
John Jenkins, a rookie out of Georgia drafted in the third round...