Wednesday, September 13, 2023

Atlanta Falcons Week 2 NFL Power Rankings Roundup

Throughout the 2023 NFL season, we will compile a consensus NFL Power Rankings that averages the rankings of all 32 NFL teams.

Below you will find a Week 2 roundup for the Atlanta Falcons in our consensus 2023 NFL Power Rankings.

ESPN -- Rank: 23

Best debut performance: S Jessie Bates III
Week 1 stats: 10 tackles, 2 INTs, forced fumble

The Falcons paid Bates one of the biggest safety contracts in league history to come from Cincinnati to Atlanta, and he showed every bit of that investment Sunday. He became the first player since Chinedum Ndukwe in 2007 to post double-digit tackles, multiple picks and a forced fumble in a game. Bates provides stability in the back line of the defense and is an instinctual player who should be able to create big defensive plays and prevent large offensive ones. -- Michael Rothstein -- Rank: 16

The run-heavy script was what we expected. But it's a little concerning that, of the Falcons' 18 throws in their win Sunday, only four went to Kyle Pitts and Drake London. And that was against a Carolina defense that was missing its best corner for much of the game. Pitts logged a few big catches, plus a 26-yarder called back on a London penalty, and running backs Tyler Allgeier and Bijan Robinson really looked great together. But otherwise, the offense didn't get it done. It was Week 1, sure, but even the respected O-line was a mixed bag. Desmond Ridder also didn't do much to quiet any doubters. The defense played great -- really, that unit won the game. Can the Falcons expect outstanding showings from Jessie Bates and Grady Jarrett every week? They might have to.

CBS Sports -- Rank: 19

They ran the ball and played good defense in beating the Panthers. The dominant showing by the defense was a bit surprising, but now they face a tougher challenge in the Packers.

USA Today -- Rank: 17

They're above .500 for the first time in nearly six years — the longest dry spell in the league — but that's not really a shock. The surprise is that they've reclassified Cordarrelle Patterson to the "joker" position. Wondering what a franchise tag is worth for jokers.

The Athletic -- Rank: 12

Positional value, schmitional value. The Falcons, who are paying a guard $100 million and drafted a running back in the top 10, gave safety Jessie Bates III a contract this offseason that could pay him $64 million, and it's looking like he's worth it. Bates delivered two interceptions and a forced fumble in his Atlanta debut. The Falcons are going to upend everything the league knows about paying players at this rate.

FOX -- Rank: 20

Asked about Drake London failing to touch the ball in his team's 24-10 win against Carolina, Falcons head coach Arthur Smith said he doesn't care about fantasy football. I'd argue that it will have very real-life effects if the Falcons can't attain a bit more balance on offense. They're not going to allow one touchdown every weekend.

Yahoo! -- Rank: 19

It's really strange that coach Arthur Smith has this idea that getting your best players the ball is just some fantasy football fascination. When Drake London has no catches, your offense is not being optimized. When you draft Bijan Robinson eighth overall and have Tyler Allgeier getting more carries than him, it's not the best use of resources. That has nothing to do with fantasy football.

PFT -- Rank: 26

It's hard to know much about the quality of the win, because it's possible the Panthers will not be very good this year.

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