Analyzing the Atlanta Falcons’ 2020 Schedule

Analyzing the Atlanta Falcons’ 2020 Schedule

by May 7, 2020 0 comments

The NFL has released their full 2020 schedule. Right away, there are some definite eyebrow-raisers for every single team. The Atlanta Falcons are no exception. Their schedule ranges from matches with teams that were good last year to clashes with clubs that were contending for the first overall draft pick.

All of this is packed into a 17-week season as follows:

DATE/TIME TEAM
Sept. 13 @ 1:00 pm vs. Seahawks
Sept. 20 @ 1:00 p.m. at Cowboys
Sept. 27 @ 1:00 p.m. vs. Bears
Oct. 5 @ 8:15 p.m. at Packers (MNF)
Oct. 11 @ 1:00 p.m. vs. Panthers
Oct. 18 @ 1:00 p.m. at Vikings
Oct. 25 @ 1:00 p.m. vs. Lions
Oct. 29 @ 8:20 p.m. at Panthers (TNF)
Nov. 8 @ 1:00 p.m. vs. Broncos
BYE N/A
Nov. 22 @ 1:00 p.m. at Saints
Nov. 29 @ 1:00 p.m. vs. Raiders
Dec. 6 @ 1:00 p.m. vs. Saints
Dec. 13 @ 4:25 p.m. at Chargers
Dec. 20 @ 1:00 p.m. vs. Buccaneers
Dec. 27 @ 1:00 p.m. at Chiefs
Jan. 3 @ 1:00 p.m. at Buccaneers

When going off of teams’ records from last year, the Falcons start with an NFC gauntlet. Weeks 1 through 4 have the Falcons playing the Seahawks, Cowboys, Bears, and Packers on Thursday. The hardest game on this first section of the schedule appears to be the Packers, who last year finished with a 13-3 record and a trip to the NFC Championship; this year’s game will be on Thursday after only four days of rest.

The next four weeks should be significantly easier. Atlanta has two games against one of their division rivals, the Carolina Panthers, in Weeks 5 and 8. While Carolina has had a lot of turnover both on the roster and coaching staff, it is still a divisional game that should be contested. Between those games, the Falcons play the Lions, who were an unimpressive 3-12-1, and the Vikings, who will be a challenge after they finished last year at 10-6.

The third quarter of the season has teams of opposite talent levels. The Broncos are up in Week 9, and while last year saw them post a decent 7-9 record, an upgraded wide receiver corps should mean they will improve this year. After this game, they have a bye week before they face the Saints in New Orleans in Week 10. New Orleans is expected to come out on top of the NFC South, but this will still be a premier game in the division. After this, the Falcons travel to Las Vegas to play the Raiders, who ended last year with a decent 7-9 record.

The five final games of the Falcons’ season contains a heavy dosage of new quarterbacks. After playing the Saints at home, they travel to Los Angeles to play the Chargers, who are transitioning from Philip Rivers to Tyrod Taylor and possibly rookie Justin Herbert. After this, they play the Buccaneers at home, who are led by Tom Brady. After this, they meet the defending Super Bowl champion Chiefs and Patrick Mahomes, who is widely regarded to be the best player in the league. The final game of the season is against the Buccaneers at Tampa Bay, where Tom Brady will try to make his 13th straight playoff appearance.

On the high end of the schedule, the Falcons will have to face the Chiefs, Packers, and Saints, who finished last season with records of 12-4, 13-3, and 13-3, respectively. On the other side of the spectrum, Atlanta will face the Lions, who went 3-12-1, and the Panthers (twice) who finished last year with a 5-11 record and now have a new coaching staff.

Atlanta is looking at approximately a 7-9 record with many close games in between.

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