Atlanta Falcons

Are the Falcons sunk because of their red zone issues?

The Atlanta Falcons’ red zone woes are once again showing its ugly side, which is bad news for Dirty Bird fans. Will it sink their season, again?

The Red Zone has been a place filled with landmines for the Atlanta Falcons.

A year ago, it was their poor performance inside the 20-yard line that derailed their track back to the Super Bowl, and during their opening night game against the defending Super Bowl champs Philadelphia Eagles, those red zone landmines have exploded in the Falcons’ faces.

If you’re keeping score at home, Atlanta visited the Eagles red zone four times and came away with only 12 points out of a possible 28. The worst failure wasn’t on the final sequence but in the first two series, which ended in a goal-line stand and a short field goal. The game was 3-0 when it could have been 10-0 or even 14-0, putting Philadelphia in a tough spot.

For Falcons fans, it is reminiscent of the Divisional playoff from a year ago, when Atlanta’s failure to convert inside the red zone cost it a trip to the NFC Championship Game. According to Pro-Football Reference, the 2017 Falcons converted on just 50 percent of their red zone opportunities (27-54), which will absolutely keep a team from winning a championship.

The thinking around Atlanta was that the Falcons were going to improve on their red zone woes during the offseason and into the preseason, but tonight, the Falcons’ red zone offense looked just as terrible as it did last season.

Next: 10 NFC predictions for Week 1

If the Falcons truly are a threat to return to the Super Bowl, they need to covert more inside the 20. That includes finally figuring out how to use Julio Jones when it counts, and stop the predictable play calling when the opportunity to score touchdowns is within reach.

If not, it will be a long season in Atlanta.

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