Preseason Week 1 action gave us a glimpse of things to come in Atlanta this season. Despite a 31-17 loss to the Baltimore Ravens, the Falcons future was on display as both WR Julio Jones and RB Jacquizz Rodgers hit pay dirt in the first half during Week 1 preseason action. Mike Smith and the Atlanta offensive coaching staff haven't been shy about their planned aerial attack in 2012 and it was on full display under the Georgia Dome early on Thursday.
The Falcons offense will be what we thought it would be. Personally, I am getting ready to crown some leading fantasy WR Kings and Julio Jones is in serious contention. Jones showed he's not just a gas can as he caught a 7-yard TD pass, to go along with gains of 26,19 and 6 yards - on the opening drive of the game! The 8 plays, 80-yard charge, that lasted all of 4:26 in clock time, was very impressive. Roddy White was prominently in the mix as well as he hauled in three passes, for 46 yards, during his one quarter of play. It all added up to an impressive 9/13 155 YD 1 TD and 1 INT stat line for QB Matt Ryan who looks ready.
Once Ryan & Co. exited, it was time to see what RB Jacquizz Rodgers had in the tank to start the second quarter. While the 33 yards on 9 touches isn't earth shattering, his 3.7 yards per rush was better than the 3.4 average that RB Michael Turner posted. The Ravens knew the rush was coming so Rodgers got what he could out of a tough situation. Atlanta opened the game with two Turner rushes that netted six yards. The Burner carried one more time for 3 yards before Ryan tossed the TD to Jones. While we don't see a total demise in Turner, a 60/40 split with Rodgers is certainly possible in the Falcons new vertical offense.