NFL 2024 season – Atlanta Falcons team preview

Yahoo Sports’ Jason Fitz and Frank Schwab discuss whether new Atlanta head coach Raheem Morris can elevate the Falcons defense to match its potent offense. Listen and subscribe to the “Zero Blitz” podcast on Apple Podcasts, Spotify or wherever you listen.

Video Transcript

I’m sneaky high on the Falcons this year.

I don’t know why I just got, I got the good, good, good, good feels so like I’m sneaky high on the Falcons.

So give me, give me your one big thing.

Yeah, my one big thing on the Falcons and we could talk about their offense for days.

We talked about them all off season.

Great addition with Cousins and Michael Penick’s drama.

They have all these weapons.

But to me, I’m thinking about Raheem Morris and his defense, Raheem Morris, obviously their new head coach, he’s been a marvelous defense coordinator throughout his career getting a second chance at the head coach.

And I think, look, the Falcon’s offense is going to be good.

Like, I don’t see they really being many paths where, yeah, Kirk Cousins might struggle with the Achilles and the quarterback controversy might seep in at some point, but I believe the Falcons offense is going to be good enough.

My question for them is can the defense be good enough to get them to the playoffs and actually be a factor?

Not just, uh, hey, we won eight or nine games, we won the NFC South.

We’re gonna get bounce in round one but actually be a team that other opponents fear in the playoffs that’s based on the defenses.

This defense has not found a pass rusher in years and years and years and they didn’t invest in that in the draft.

They drafted Michael Pennix instead.

Very questionable.

There does just adding Raheem Morris fix the defense and if you can raise that defense to middle of the pack in the NFL, I think you can make a huge difference with the way that offense is going to be.

They could put up a lot of points with Bijon and Pitts and Drake London and all them.

If the defense comes along too, it really could be a really nice season for the Atlanta Falcons and a lot of this is on Raheem Morris and how good he is fixing this defense.

He’s also gonna have to make sure that things just stay right in that locker room.

I mean, we talked about it at the time, but, you know, the drafting of Michael Pennix is going to create some questions if Kirk doesn’t play well, if that achilles has any lingering effect.

And, you know, I I, I’ll be consistent to what I said on Tuesday about the Jets.

I don’t like a 7384 year old quarterback coming off of an achilles injury.

Like I don’t care if we’re talking about Aaron Rodgers or we’re talking about Kirk cousins or we’re talking about Mother Teresa trying to get out there.

You’re coming off an achilles injury later in your career.

I think there’s a real question marks if he doesn’t play well, how many weeks will it take before the questions start?

And then can he as a coach remain consistent at that position?

We see it in the college game all the time.

Head coaches mishandling the quarterback position and just having a rotating door gets people fired.

Raheem Morris is really like, he’s hitched his wagon to this.

This is his last shot likely as a head coach in the NFL, he better have a real pulse on how to keep the locker room together if things don’t start particularly well for Kirk.

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