Originally posted on Fox Sports South  |  Last updated 1/14/13
FLOWERY BRANCH, Ga. -- Even though none of the Atlanta Falcons would publicly acknowledge the heightened pressure to win leading up to Sunday's playoff clash with the Seahawks, make no mistake, the anxiety was real. Alas, having finally earned that first playoff triumph of the Mike Smith era -- a miraculous 30-28 victory over the Seahawks -- the Falcons seemingly could breathe in a collective sigh of relief. Does it stand to reason Atlanta can now play looser in Sunday's NFC championship against San Francisco, the first home title game in the Falcons' 46-year history? Do they stand to benefit from the change in atmosphere? "I think so," safety Thomas DeCoud said after the Seattle win. "A little bit looser. Like you said, we have that proverbial monkey off our back. Now, we can, you know, really calm down, hit our stride and make sure we dont make the same mistakes we did in this game. Thats just one more thing off of our plate. "Now, we got to just correct what we did wrong ...
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

NFL deciding how to share random PSI data during season

Report: LeSean McCoy has tear in hamstring

Report: Jay Cutler expected to play hurt against Raiders

Report: Marshawn Lynch not likely to play against Lions

WATCH: Adrien Broner uses Bruce Jenner zinger after win

ESPN explains reason for Dabo Swinney interview error


Brian Kelly: Kizer made right call on 2-point play

Jim Mora calls UCLA's upcoming schedule 'a complete injustice'

Tommy Tuberville returned to Auburn, lined up at Tiger Walk

WATCH: Arizona State pushes pile 20 yards on TD run

Jim McElwain still won't name Will Grier Florida's starter

Steve Smith has microfractures in back, out for Week 5

Ohio State fans rip Cardale Jones on Twitter despite victory

LeBron has message for Tristian Thompson on Instagram

Rangers fire social media staffer over Charlie Strong tweet

Did Ndamukong Suh kick Ryan Fitzpatrick in the head?

Cormier tops Gustafsson at UFC 192

Robert Smith wants Braxton Miller back at QB

WATCH: Clemson, Swinney have locker room dance party

10 takeaways from Week 5 of the college football season

WATCH: Dabo Swinney interview awkwardly cut off

Ohio St. LB Darron Lee has message for fans after close win

WATCH: Swedish league player unties opponent's skates

Max Scherzer throws second no-hitter of the season

Ezekiel Elliott jokes he owes his OL a steak dinner

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.
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

10 takeaways from Week 5 of the college football season

Rick Pitino and the shadows that never leave

Chad Johnson ... Steelers kicker?

Flacco deserves more from the Ravens

Time for Neymar's Barcelona

Seth Rollins, WWE depth, Divas and winning

Madison Keys and the future of women’s tennis

Most underrated games in NFL Week 4

What to watch in CFB Week 5

Starter strategies for final, tie-breaker and wild card games

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Follow Yardbarker