Alright this is what I’ve seen from watching each play of the first half over and over. Here is my methodology. I will watch each play multiple times. I’ll pay attention to each player on the line to see how they perform. I’ll also see what I can see of the back half of the field if possible.
This is what I noticed.
1. Neither QB looked very good. Garrard threw one really bad interception but easily could have thrown 2-3 more. Gabbert overthrew his receivers multiple times.
2. Gabbert needs better pocket presence he doesn’t trust his line yet and is too quick to get out of the pocket.
3. The receivers are actually pretty decent, they are getting open. No drops this game that I saw. Well until Dropperwood gets on the field in second half. I like Shorts, Hill, Thomas and Dillard.
4. Shorts looks really good. He consistently gets open and hauls the passes in.
5. Rashean Mathis is back, he looks good. Cox looks very good too.
6. Alualu, Alualu, Alualu. Buy your jerseys now boys and girls he is the real deal. He is non-stop and is constantly putting pressure on the QB. Barring injury we’re talking multiple pro-bowl player. He looks as good as any DL out there.
7. Don’t worry about the lack of sacks. Trust me Ryan felt the pressure. He never had much time.
8. Jeremy Mincey also looked really good. He has high motor and could easily end up with 4-8 sacks this year.
9. Austen Lane wasn’t horrible but he sure wasn’t as good as Mincey.
10. Greg Jones is a monster blocker, he really is a great asset on this team.
11. Whimper is not as bad as some say. I saw him have a very solid game.
12. Rackley will start. Period.
13. Our defense is back. I believe we’ll be Top half of the league in defense this year.
14. Knighton is not back yet. He looked slow and lethargic.
Play by play analysis if you're interested below.
1st-10, JAC20 15:00 D. Garrard passed to J. Hill to the left for 9 yard gain
Quick pass to J. Hill. Good protection. He could have thrown it to Marcedes as well. Nice quick throw to get Garrad going.
2nd-1, JAC29 14:32 D. Garrard incomplete pass to the right
The Falcons throw everything but the kitchen sink at Garrard and the left side of the line was stouter than the right. But all the blitzers were coming in on the right. Still enough protection to give Garrard the time he needed. Both wide receivers are out alone on an island. I think Jason Hill was in a little better position. If Garrard had waited another second I think Hill would have beaten his guy downfield. The pass was overthrown and was lucky it wasn’t intercepted it was right to the guy in red and black.
3rd-1, JAC29 14:26 D. Garrard rushed up the middle for 1 yard gain
Garrard behind Meester. That was a tough yard.
1st-10, JAC30 13:43 D. Karim rushed up the middle for 4 yard loss
I think the Falcons must have been listening in on the call. They send a LB and a safety around the left side right where Deji wants to go. I think as well that this is perhaps a misread by the O-line. Both Will Rackley and Monroe go after the same guy and no one picks up the blitzing safety. Greg Jones stones his LB of course but the safety is untouched.
2nd-14, JAC26 13:07 D. Garrard passed to M. Lewis to the right for 4 yard gain
Now the protection was pretty good. Atlanta tried some stunts and I saw Rackley react really well and keep his guy out of contention. DG pases to M. Lewis who is quickly pulled down. However, I looked and if look on the top of your screen Hill really blows past his guy. He’s wide open and the safety is playing way off. Karim is open in that direction as well. So basically DG throws into two guys when the other side of the board has been cleared by Hill and he’s wide open. A pass to Karim or Hill would have been a better choice. I never see DG look that way though.
3rd-10, JAC30 12:25 D. Garrard passed to M. Thomas to the left for 24 yard gain
Protection wasn’t that great. Monroe lets his guy through and Garrard has to move a foot or so. And Rackley loses his guy as well. What I saw on this play is two wide open receivers. Jarrett Dillard is wide open at the top of your screen. He’s 2-3 yards off the defender. Lay one over the top and he’s gone. Although going to M80 isn’t a bad thing, he was open as well.
1st-10, ATL46 11:18 B. Grimes intercepted D. Garrard for 62 yards
Well what can we say about this one? It was good protection especially by the tackles Whimper and Monroe. Monroe plays his guy perfectly. Just Garrard sails one 10 yards over the top.
1st-10, JAC42 11:18 M. Ryan passed to M. Turner down the middle for 3 yard gain
The entire defensive line puts some good pressure. Alualu and Pot Roast really push their guys back. Two guys on Alualu and he still pushes them within a few feet of QB. Knighton actually hammers Ryan right as he releases the ball. All three LB’s are within feet of Turner as he catches it. Poz makes the actual tackle.
2nd-7, JAC39 10:38 M. Turner rushed up the middle for 9 yard gain
Not a good showing by the defensive line Turner doesn’t get hit til he’s 5-6 yards downfield. There actually was a blitz by Daryl Smith that would have gotten there ina pass play or a slower run.
1st-15, JAC35 9:40 M. Ryan passed to J. Snelling to the left for 3 yard gain
Again this is why I watch these replays. I can watch the same play over and over again. You can’t tell much in live game, and you also can’t tell anything from box score. On this play Mincey gets a hand on Ryan and Alualu hammers him right as he throws the ball. Again Alualu is a beast.
2nd-12, JAC32 8:58 J. Snelling rushed up the middle for 11 yard gain
Again really good penetration by Alualu and Mincey. I think Knighton would have stopped the carrier if his guy wasn’t draped over him.
3rd-1, JAC21 8:20 M. Ryan incomplete pass to the right
Ok on this one the entire defensive line switches sides. Again Alualu gets the most pressure, he just powers his guy back into the backfield. Mincey gets stonewalled. Daryl Smith is blitzing from the bottom/right. And a delay blitz by Bosworth almost gets there. It looks like great coverage down field. Looks like Mathis has his receiver blanketed who was the target of the play.
Field Goal, etc.
Atlanta kicked off, D. Karim returned kickoff for 40 yards
Again Karim looks really good and explosive on KO returns.
1st-10, JAC37 8:02 D. Garrard rushed to the right for 6 yard gain
Planned roll to the right, and there isn’t anyone within 15 yards of Garrard. Offensive line just completely seals the entire Atl DL away from play.
2nd-4, JAC43 7:38 D. Karim rushed up the middle for 6 yard gain
Karim looks really quick running behind Monroe and Rackley.
1st-10, JAC49 6:46 C. Shorts rushed to the left for 10 yard loss. C. Shorts fumbled. S. Weatherspoon recovered fumble
I think part of this one has to go on Potter. He should have at least slowed down the RE. He doesn’t even get a hand on him. Greg Jones stones his guy but it was a lost play. You all have seen it, what else is there to say?
1st-10, JAC39 6:46 M. Turner rushed to the right for 3 yard loss
Again huge penetration by d-line by guess who… Alualu. And Roth, they completely cut off his lane and he’s forced to try to cut back where he’s met by Bosworth.
2nd-13, JAC42 6:07 M. Ryan passed to H. Douglas to the left for 11 yard gain
Again pretty good push back for the d-line. I have to say however Knighton looks pretty fat and slow. He’s really being outshined by Alualu. Coleman almost drops Douglas at the line of scrimmage but totally whiffs on the tackle.
3rd-2, JAC31 5:23 M. Ryan incomplete pass to the left. Atlanta committed 19 yard penalty
Really good penetration by D-line other than Knighton who gets double-teamed. Alualu gets within a foot or two forcing Ryan to scoot back, and then finally Mincey breaks free and gets in Ryans face causing the penalty. Good motor by Mincey. The best part is they got all of the penetration and disruption with 4. The receivers were blanketed Ryan had nowhere to go with the ball. I have to say I’m impressed. Imagine when we get Kampmann back.
1st-10, JAC20 5:06 D. Karim rushed up the middle for no gain
Atl pretty much committed everyone to the run. The blocking looked fine as far as I could tell. But once ATL put nine in to stop the run not much you can do.
2nd-10, JAC20 4:27 D. Garrard incomplete pass down the middle
Pretty good protection other than from Whimper, he does get pushed back and kind of forces Garrard to move up and not really be able to step into his throw. Everyone else looks perfect. Garrard just badly misses the throw.
3rd-10, JAC20 4:22 D. Garrard passed to C. Shorts to the left for 16 yard gain
Atl sends 8 in to blitz. Garrard has just enough time to get the ball off before he gets hammered from the front and the back. He throws a pretty pass and Shorts makes up for the fumble with a really good catch.
1st-10, JAC36 3:52 D. Karim rushed to the right for 1 yard loss
2nd-11, JAC35 3:16 M. Owens rushed up the middle for 9 yard gain
Again Greg Jones powers a way for his runner to get through. He really is quite a blocker.
3rd-2, JAC44 2:32 M. Owens rushed to the left for 3 yard gain
Owens looks decisive. He finds the hole and he hits it. Listen up Karim this is how you hit a hole.
1st-10, JAC47 1:51 D. Garrard sacked by K. Biermann and S. Weatherspoon
Falcons run a stunt that gets through. Garrard almost evades it, actually he evades the first set of hits and then the second as well before he finally goes down by the third. That’s some of what Garrard brings to the team he is a pretty tough guy.
2nd-11, JAC46 1:13 D. Garrard passed to D. Karim to the right for 26 yard gain
This was a quick pass that was really all Karim’s speed and elusiveness for an additional 20 yrds or so.
1st-10, ATL28 0:33 D. Garrard passed to C. Shorts to the left for 13 yard gain
Shorts is wide open. Protection is good, and pass was good. Perfect play really.
1st-10, ATL15 15:00 D. Garrard incomplete pass down the middle
Great protection all around, Garrard had plenty of time. This could very easily have been an interception. It needs to be about two feet higher and to the right. Garrard just plain misses. I mean he would have hit Lewis squarely where he threw it but higher and further in front and only Lewis would have had a shot.
2nd-10, ATL15 14:56 D. Garrard passed to M. Thomas to the left for 7 yard gain
Good protection but Montell Owens throws the block that buy Garrard the time to get it done. Good throw by Garrard.
3rd-3, ATL8 14:32 D. Garrard incomplete pass to the right
Now Monroe lets his guy get into the feet of Garrard. But Lewis is wide open and Garrard misses him by about 3-4 feet above and out of his reach. I mean this overthrow cost us a new set of downs, and possibly the first TD of preseason.
1st-15, ATL15 14:01 M. Turner rushed up the middle for 1 yard gain
This is the first one I see the old Knighton. Knighton just tosses the OL man aside and stuffs the runner. Mincey gets good penetration off the side as well.
2nd-14, ATL16 13:19 M. Ryan incomplete pass to the left
No one breaks through in DL but he didn’t have a whole lot of time left. Cox is blanketing first round pick Julio Jones with perfect position. Greene was in good position too.
3rd-14, ATL16 13:13 M. Ryan incomplete pass to the right
Everyone gets penetration except for Morgan who gets thrown to the ground. Mincey, Alualu and Roth all get after Ryan and flush him out of the pocket. Alualu would have had him shortly if he hadn’t thrown it.
1st-10, JAC44 12:52 B. Gabbert incomplete pass to the right
Great protection, he had all day to throw. He just doesn’t plant right and step into the throw and then throws it at the feet of a wide open Mike Thomas.
2nd-10, JAC44 12:47 B. Gabbert passed to R. Murphy to the left for 6 yard gain
Good protection and he rifles it into the perfect spot. If perhaps he had been a little more patient there were routes opening up up top. What I’m seeing is that the receivers are doing a great job at getting open. What free agent WR do we need again?
3rd-4, 50 12:07 B. Gabbert incomplete pass to the left
Nice protection and then nice fade pass but it wasn’t the right read. He caught ATL off guard, and M80 had blown by his guy and was wide open up top. That was a lot better option.
4th-4, 50 11:49 M. Turk punt, no return
Nice punt pinned them inside their own 5 yard line.
1st-10, ATL5 11:49 M. Turner rushed up the middle for 1 yard gain
Good play by D-line didn’t allow them to get any type of push.
2nd-9, ATL6 11:07 M. Ryan incomplete pass to the right
Lane puts some pretty good pressure from right side, and ATL finally gets it and double teams Alualu. Good coverage and not much time for ryan so he misses.
3rd-9, ATL6 11:02 M. Ryan passed to R. White to the left for 13 yard gain
Good pressure up front but no one gets through. Alualu gets doubled. Mincey and Mosley get tied up together.
1st-10, ATL19 10:18 M. Turner rushed to the right for 3 yard gain
Good penetration by Mincey, Alualu. They are just throwing Oline guys around like they are children.
2nd-7, ATL22 9:32 M. Turner rushed to the left for 2 yard gain
Man Alualu is just a beast, he really just manhandles his guy again. Mincey had a shot in the backfield but just whiffs. David Jones makes a good tackle. Smith was coming around the backside and was untouched.
3rd-5, ATL24 8:43 M. Ryan passed to H. Douglas down the middle for 76 yard touchdown.
Atl does a quick snap and catches Jags off guard. Coleman had a shot at the tackle and doesn’t make it, and Dawan Landry also takes a wrong angle and gets burned.
1st-10, JAC18 8:38 B. Gabbert incomplete pass to the left
This one was a tipped pass that was on the way to a wide open Cecil Shorts. Just one of those things, perfectly timed jump that deflects the pass.
2nd-10, JAC18 8:33 B. Bolen rushed up the middle for no gain
Penetration from Whimpers side. He doesn’t look to get a hand on anyone.
3rd-10, JAC18 7:53 B. Gabbert passed to J. Dillard down the middle for 11 yard gain
Great protection. Again Greg Jones shows why he’s one of the best FB. He throws a key block and actually stops two guys from getting to Gabbert. Gabbert adjusts a little bit in the pocket and throws a perfect past to Dillard.
1st-10, JAC29 7:12 R. Murphy rushed up the middle for 6 yard gain
Again this one is all Greg Jones he comes in makes a perfect block to spring Murphy. Otherwise this one goes for 1-2 maybe. Otherwise good O-line protection.
2nd-4, JAC35 6:33 R. Murphy rushed up the middle for 1 yard gain
Good spin move by Murphy when he gets hit at line of scrimmage.
3rd-3, JAC36 5:53 B. Gabbert sacked by J. Babineaux
This one is on Monroe, this is his guy who gets through. He had enough time to throw but I can’t tell if no one is open or what the deal is.
4th-12, JAC27 5:16 M. Turk punt, no return
Turk has another really good punt. Much better than last week.
1st-10, ATL19 5:16 M. Turner rushed up the middle for 1 yard gain
This one is all Mosley, He powers through the line and gets Turner right at the line. Mincey is there as well.
2nd-9, ATL20 4:37 M. Ryan passed to T. Gonzalez to the left for 5 yard gain
Again Mincey gets into the backfield and is after Ryan. Ryan is probably 10 yards behind the line of scrimmage and Mincey is chasing him down. Alualu is not out there.
3rd-4, ATL25 3:51 Atlanta committed 10 yard penalty
Holy crap. Alualu! I mean this guy is freaking a beast he powers through like 3 blocks. I mean the guy is literally unstoppable. I’m telling you guys Alualu looks like the best person on the team by far. Kind of funny when you think of all those people calling him a reach last year.
3rd-14, ATL15 3:25 M. Ryan passed to O. Mughelli to the right for 5 yard gain
Again what I notice is D-line barely gets time to get set, and Alualu explodes off the line. Aaron Morgan does a nice spin move on the left side. Rashean Mathis really throws his body into the tackle. Very nice.
1st-10, JAC36 2:31 R. Murphy rushed up the middle for 5 yard loss
Neither Rackley nor Monroe did particularly well this play. Lots of penetration on their side of the line from blitzers.
2nd-20, JAC26 2:00 B. Gabbert passed to J. Hill to the left for 10 yard gain
Perfect protection. Good route, perfect pass.
3rd-10, JAC36 1:56 B. Gabbert incomplete pass to the right
This one looks like a rookie play. He doesn’t trust his pocket and rolls out to his right. I thought the protection looked pretty good. And because he leaves the pocket he makes it harder for his oline to protect him which causes him to get chased and have to throw it away.
1st-10, ATL25 1:36 M. Ryan incomplete pass to the right
Alualu gets double teamed but Austen Lane really gets a pretty good jump. This one was a dropped pass.
2nd-10, ATL25 1:31 M. Ryan incomplete pass to the left
Ryan just misses on this one. Maybe the pressure is getting to him.
3rd-10, ATL25 1:27 M. Ryan incomplete pass down the middle
Both Morgan and MIncey get there. Ryan has no time.
1st-10, JAC42 1:03 B. Gabbert passed to C. Shorts to the right for 8 yard gain
Everyone drops into coverage Cecil still finds a nice hole for a nice gain.
2nd-2, 50 0:55 R. Murphy rushed up the middle for 7 yard gain
Nice run in a tiny hole. Monroe completely overpowers his guy.
1st-10, ATL43 0:31 B. Gabbert incomplete pass to the left
This one again looks like rookie nerves. Pocket was ok and he bails. He had rb wide open in middle of the field.
2nd-10, ATL43 0:25 B. Gabbert incomplete pass to the right
Overthrows Hill but he really isn’t open so it could have been intentional.
3rd-10, ATL43 0:21 B. Gabbert incomplete pass to the left
He overthrows Dillard. And has Brock Bolen wide open on his right.