They share the honors for the best record in the NFL this season at 13-3 with Denver. But, going into Sunday's divisional playoff against Seattle, most of the regular NFL experts say Atlanta fattened up on the easiest schedule in the league.
The talking heads are also quick to point out that the Falcons were not only beaten but embarrassed in their playoff appearances the past two years.
Last year, they were beaten 24-2 by the Giants and in 2010, 48-21 by the Packers. In addition, the 2008 Falcons lost their first round playoff game to the Arizona Cardinals. So, Mike Smith—whose teams had 13-3 and 10-6 regular season records the past two years—is 0-2, with back-to-back stinkers in the playoffs. Atlanta's quarterback, Matt Ryan, is 0-3 in his playoff starts as well.
Using these facts as the primary reasoning, it has been pre-determined by most of the sports media world that the Falcons' staff and stars can't win when in the playoff spotlight.
As a result, the most recent poll I read said that out of 120,000 responses, 65 percent of the fans world-wide expect the Falcons to lose their first round game Sunday.
Really? I always question why media wants me to look at anything a certain way. Unfortunately, that only makes me in the minority.
I'm going all in and saying the Atlanta Falcons will beat Seattle in the Georgia Dome and advance to the NFC Championship Game. There are a number of reasons why I believe it will happen.
For the sake of keeping my reasoning in the same context as the reasons the "experts" are giving, I'm going to share the following five: