Atlanta Falcons – 10, Houston Texans – 17

Right when the Falcons needed a win the most, Matt Ryan (277 total yards, 1 TD, 2 INTs) just wasn’t able to deliver in a hostile road environment.  The Falcons now fall into a position where they’ll have to fight and scrap to try to grab a wildcard with the Saints winning yet again.  TJ Yates (198 total yards, 1 TD) actually looked pretty good for a 3rdstring rookie QB; he was poised and delivered when he had to, and with the Texans defense and running game playing lights out, he may not have to do much to get the Texans into the playoffs.

No one seems to have told Tony Gonzalez (7-100) that he’s the elder statesman amongst tight ends, as he added another 100 yard receiving game to his Hall of Fame resume.  Roddy White (4-51, 1 TD) also had another good game that included a score, as he looks like he’s finally turning the corner.  Julio Jones (4-68) also returned to relative health and had his first decent game in more than a month.

Andre Johnson (4-97) also looked finally healthy and on the same page with Yates, but it looks like he may have tweaked his left hamstring during the game.  Stay tuned during the week to see if the injury is something serious.  Owen Daniels (3-35) continues to plod along at his normal 30-40 yards, which hasn’t changed no matter who the QB is.

This was a forgettable game for Michael Turner (14 car., 44 yards), as the Texans put the clamps on the running game and once the Falcons were behind had to turn to the air.  In any game the Falcons end up behind in, you probably aren’t going to get much from Turner, who’s much better if the Falcons are playing with a lead.

Arian Foster (31 car., 111 yards, 1 TD; 3 rec., 41 yards) is going to be leaned on heavily in the coming weeks to take the pressure off Yates, and he appears to be up to the task.  It would be hard to argue that Foster is going to be at least a top 3 RB the rest of the way.