Originally posted on Pro Sports Daily  |  Last updated 12/17/12
ATLANTA -- Frauds, pretenders: The Atlanta Falcons have been called both, and worse, this season. They undoubtedly changed some of those perceptions on Sunday, with a convincing beatdown of the defending Super Bowl champions that had show something to even their biggest doubters out there. Matt Ryan passed for 270 yards and three touchdowns, and the Falcons' defense dominated from the opening kickoff in a 34-0 rout of the New York Giants at the Georgia Dome. The win keeps the Falcons (12-2) atop the race for the No. 1 seed out of the NFC and avenges last year's ugly 24-2 playoff loss to the Giants in New York. A loss by the San Francisco 49ers on Sunday night at New England would clinch a first-round bye for the Falcons, who finish at Detroit on Thursday and at home against Tampa Bay. The Giants (8-6) have lost four of six and remain locked in a tight battle for the NFC East with games against Baltimore and Philadelphia remaining. New York was shut out for the first time since a 23-0 playoff loss against Carolina in 2005. Ryan completed his first eight passes to six different receivers and broke his own team records for completions and yards in a season during his best performance of the year. He finished 23-of-28 with two touchdowns to Juilo Jones and another to Tony Gonzalez. Jones finished with six catches for 74 yards and touchdowns of 40 and 3 yards. The first half was all Atlanta. So was the second. The Falcons picked off Eli Manning twice in the first half and pressured him relentlessly. Asante Samuel intercepted Manning on the Giants' first possession, setting up Atlanta on the New York 16. Four plays later, Michael Turner barreled in from a yard out to put the Falcons up 7-0, three minutes into the game. Thomas DeCoud also got Manning with a diving interception that led to Matt Bryant's 38-yard field goal and a 17-0 Atlanta lead early in the second quarter. Manning completed 14-of-26 passes for 161 yards with two interceptions. The Giants had four drives inside Falcons' territory, but came up with no points. Lawrence Tynes missed a field goal, and the Giants failed to convert on three fourth-down attempts. Notes: A moment of silence was observed to pay respects for those impacted in the Sandy Hook Elementary shooting in Newtown, Conn., Friday. ... Giants receiver Victor Cruz wore the name of one of the victims, 6-year-old Jack Pinto, on his gloves and cleats. The entire team wore a "SHES" decal on their helmets for Sandy Hook Elementary School. ... Giants leading rusher Ahmad Bradshaw (left knee) missed his first game of the season. ... Falcons safety William Moore missed his second straight game with injured ribs. Chris Hope started in Moore's place, but was hurt in the second quarter and had to leave the game but did return. ... Michael Turner passed William Andrews and moved into second place on the Falcons' all-time rushing leader list.
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Manfred blames MLBPA for no significant rule changes in 2017

Report: Zach Britton has potential oblique injury

The Rock returns to WWE, leaves CM Punk a voicemail after 'Raw'

After outfield collision, Ichiro pranks teammate and claims he’s been cut

Simeon Rice gets vulgar with radio host over HOF debate

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Ronda Rousey to be guest star on NBC’s ‘Blindspot’

Lakers replace Jim Buss with Magic Johnson, fire Kupchak

Report: James Harrison, Steelers share mutual interest in 2017 return

Jimmy Garoppolo’s mom keeping him up to speed on his trade rumors

Report: Clippers intent on keeping both Blake Griffin, Chris Paul

Slam dunks and startups: How all-star technology took over the NBA in The Big Easy

Nintendo is finally, thankfully embracing sports and eSports

The 'Did the Kings just make the Pelicans into a super team?' quiz

Will the Timberwolves start showcasing their potential?

'Playmakers' in Ice Cube's league who can help the Cavs

Box Score 2/21: It's trade heartbreak season

The guard tandems you'd want in a 2-on-2 tournament

We got our hands on the new Nintendo Switch, here are our first impressions

Top 10 second basemen in baseball for 2017

Teams and players who could be dealing at the NBA trade deadline

As NHL trade deadline nears, seven teams who could be dealing

Baseball movies you can stream now to hold you over until Opening Day

Movies you can stream now to get your football fix

NFL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Nintendo is finally, thankfully embracing sports and eSports

The 'Did the Kings just make the Pelicans into a super team?' quiz

Will the Timberwolves start showcasing their potential?

'Playmakers' in Ice Cube's league who can help the Cavs

QUIZ: Name every MLB pitcher to win 100 games with two different teams

The guard tandems you'd want in a 2-on-2 tournament

We got our hands on the new Nintendo Switch, here are our first impressions

Top 10 second basemen in baseball for 2017

Teams, players who could be dealing at the NBA trade deadline

As NHL trade deadline nears, seven teams who could be dealing

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker