Just so everyone knows, I forgot New Orleans had a bye week and left Pierre Thomas on my fantasy team. I could have had Jacquizz Rodgers starting in my backfield.
The little scat back filled in admirably for the injured Julio Jones and Roddy White and accounted for two touchdowns receiving as the Atlanta Falcons held the Tampa Bay Buccaneers winless again, 31-23.
More importantly, the Buccaneers will wait and see about the condition of star running back Doug Martin, who was injured in the contest.
According to ESPN.com, “Martin left the game early in the third quarter with a shoulder injury and did not return. Martin had 11 carries for 47 yards before he was injured while attempting to catch a 16-yard pass near the left sideline. A side judge threw a penalty flag for an apparent unnecessary roughness on Falcons safety William Moore, but referee Walt Anderson withdrew the flag. Martin lay on his back for several minutes before walking off the field under his own power. He said X-rays "look fine" and the shoulder is not separated.”
The win was the second of the season for the Falcons. The Buccaneers remain winless with the Jaguars and Giants.
Here is what we learned from Sunday’s game.
Glennon’s learning curve
Glennon had 256 yards and two scores and was still on the losing end. He is getting better. He and Vincent Jackson are quickly developing chemistry as the veteran had 10 catches for 138 yards and Glennon’s two touchdown tosses.
"He went on the road and showed he can handle the pressure on the road," said Tampa Bay receiver Mike Williams of Glennon. "As a team, we've got to help him and make more plays for him."
Ryan looks more in control
The one thing in this game that looked better was how Matt Ryan was in the passing game. Although he did not have his two top receivers in Roddy White and Julio Jones, Harry Douglas and Rodgers filled in admirably.
Ryan finished the game with 273 yards passing and three scores.
Different defensive look
Falcons defensive coordinator Mike Nolan worked the game from sideline instead of the press box level, where he had been stationed this season. The Falcons defense was aggressive against the Bucs offensive line, recording three sacks for a loss of 30 yards. The win could mean Nolan remains on the sideline for the team’s next game.
Third down versus fourth down
Tampa Bay did not look its best on third down. The Buccaneers were only able to convert five of 17 third-down attempts. On fourth down, it was a different. story. Tampa Bay converted all three attempts for first downs and to move the chains.
More line changes for Tampa Bay
The offensive line continues to shuffle due to illness and injury. The Buccaneers moved center Jeremy Zuttah to left guard where he started for Carl Nicks, who was out after undergoing surgery for MRSA infection. Ted Larsen started at center and drew a personal foul for unnecessary roughness in the second quarter. The team will need to worry more about continuity if the health issues continue to exist.