6:55 AM EST, Wed January 24, 2018
Cat Scratch Reader Jan 1, 2018
Panthers at Falcons: 3 plays to love, 3 plays to hate

Panthers at Falcons: 3 plays to love, 3 plays to hate

These key plays swung momentum and decided the Panthers 22-10 road loss against the Atlanta Falcons concluding Carolina’s regular season at 11-5.   Plays to Love, Plays to Hate (aka "P2L, P2H") looks at the most significant plays in swinging momentum and impacting the eventual outcome of the game. There is always plenty to hate about NFL officiating, so we will only focus on the plays on the field, not the refs. Three plays to love 2nd Quarter 1:02 – Panthers 0, Falcons 7. Panthers ball 3rd-and-23 at ATL 31 The Situation: The Panthers woeful offense was scoreless with the first half...
The Falcoholic Jan 1, 2018
What We Learned: Falcons vs. Panthers

What We Learned: Falcons vs. Panthers

Fact: The Falcons are playoff bound. Six teams in the NFC playoff picture. Five of them are new to the party after missing out last season. That one lone team just so happens to be a team that many counted out. Entering the regular season finale against the 11-win Carolina Panthers, the Atlanta Falcons faced a clear-and-precise scenario: win and you're in. By no means was this deemed to be an easy matchup for the Falcons. Especially given that the Panthers not only beat the Falcons once before this season but also the Panthers were playing for a possible NFC South division title as well....
Cat Scratch Reader Jan 1, 2018
Panthers fall flat again, lose to Falcons

Panthers fall flat again, lose to Falcons

Carolina New Year’s leaves their last chance of winning the NFC South in Atlanta From all of us here at Cat Scratch Reader, let me wish you a happy new year. We’re going to begin 2018 with a hangover sized dose of optimism. Don’t worry, there will be plenty more coming tomorrow. Letting the Falcons slip into the playoffs might not be what we had in mind for celebrating the end of 2017 but it is what we got. Yesterday’s game was once again a rough offensive performance for a team buoyed by a championship-caliber defense. Stop me if you’ve heard this one before. What I liked. ....
The Falcoholic Jan 1, 2018
Falcons vs. Panthers recap: Atlanta’s big day propels them to the postseason

Falcons vs. Panthers recap: Atlanta’s big day propels them to the postseason

Aided by Carolina, the Falcons win and are now in. On a day where the Falcons absolutely had to win to ensure they got into the playoffs, their defense came to play, showing all the flash and potency you’d expect from a unit lusting after a playoff spot. Through four quarters, the Falcons held a depleted Panthers offense to just 10 points, coming up with three interceptions, a couple of sacks, and several big run stops. It was a stellar effort, one that effectively won the game for Atlanta. The offense and special teams, meanwhile, essentially did everything they could to keep this...
The Falcoholic Jan 1, 2018
Matt Ryan has more passing yards through 10 seasons than any quarterback in NFL history

Matt Ryan has more passing yards through 10 seasons than any quarterback in NFL history

Ryan’s up-and-down season ends with a bang. Matt Ryan played a stellar game against the Panthers, by and large, despite losing Andy Levitre, Taylor Gabriel, and others throughout the course of the game. He had a few inaccurate throws, but he finished the day with 317 yards. That was enough to help propel the Falcons to a victory, thankfully, and it was also enough for Ryan to set yet another mark in his long and distinguished career. He beat out Peyton Manning for the most passing yards through ten NFL seasons, which is pretty incredible. Matt Ryan now has the most passing yards by a...
The Falcoholic Dec 31, 2017
The Atlanta Falcons play the Los Angeles Rams on Saturday Night

The Atlanta Falcons play the Los Angeles Rams on Saturday Night

The birds travel to the west coast for a wildcard playoff game. This is just your typical schedule update, and I don’t want to get too misty-eyed on how the Falcons fought back from that Super Bowl game to a 10-6 record and a playoff berth. Unlike the Carolina Panthers, Atlanta made it back. And it feels so goooooooood. The Atlanta Falcons still need to show improvement, but probably got their best path to the Super Bowl. And it starts in six days. Falcons will play the Rams Saturday at 8:15 pm on NBC— Mike Conti (@MikeConti929) January 1, 2018 The Falcons were close to getting the...
The Falcoholic Dec 31, 2017
Falcons-Panthers post-game injury report: Atlanta Falcons banged up during playoff clinching victory

Falcons-Panthers post-game injury report: Atlanta Falcons banged up during playoff clinching victory

Fact: Andy Levitre can chew up an apple and spit out spiked cider The Atlanta Falcons rode Matt Bryant’s right leg to a playoff birth today. They will face off against the high powered Los Angeles Rams offense next weekend. We will have plenty of time in the days ahead to break down the win (including three Cam Newton interceptions!) but for now, let’s break down the injuries, because they were numerous. Julio Jones took a vicious (and clean) hit from Mike Adams on a passing play across the middle of the field during the first drive of the game. He was keeled over for about twenty...
Cat Scratch Reader Dec 31, 2017
Panthers at Falcons Final Score: Inconsistency plagues Panthers as they lose 22-10

Panthers at Falcons Final Score: Inconsistency plagues Panthers as they lose 22-10

The Panthers got kicked in the teeth by a division rival to close the season. The Panthers did not look like a playoff team in this game, and that’s about as nice as I can put it. I’m going to redact the takeaway section this week, as pretty much everything is negative. The Panthers couldn’t run the ball effectively, Cam Newton couldn’t complete damn near any of his passes, the defense couldn’t sack Matt Ryan or force turnovers. The only reason the score wasn’t much worse is because the Falcons didn’t score touchdowns in the redzone. This was bad. The Falcons dinked and dunked...
The Falcoholic Dec 31, 2017
Falcons 22 - Panthers 10 final score: Defense and Matt Bryant push Atlanta into the playoffs

Falcons 22 - Panthers 10 final score: Defense and Matt Bryant push Atlanta into the playoffs

Atlanta wins on suffocating defense and just enough offense with their season on the line. Offensively challenged and defensively stellar, the Falcons fought Carolina like hell in this one, and the result was a needed win to bring Atlanta back into the playoffs for the second straight year. The Falcons were awesome defensively on a day where Cam Newton was simply inaccurate and their ground game was pretty miserable. They harried Newton, made plays on the ball and came away with two interceptions, and showed off all the speed and physicality Dan Quinn dreamt of in 2015 when he took this...
Cat Scratch Reader Dec 31, 2017
Panthers at Falcons: 2nd half open game thread

Panthers at Falcons: 2nd half open game thread

The Panthers are tied with the Falcons 7-7 at the half. The Panthers are tied with the Falcons 7-7 at the half. It was a slow start for the Panthers but fortunately they finally woke up and started playing well in the 2nd quarter. Hopefully we’ll see more of that the rest of the way. Let’s keep the conversation going. You know the drill. This is now an open thread!
The Falcoholic Dec 31, 2017
Andy Levitre, Taylor Gabriel exit Panthers game with injuries

Andy Levitre, Taylor Gabriel exit Panthers game with injuries

The Falcons came into this game fairly healthy but are already suffering injuries. The Falcons came into this game surprisingly healthy, but it may have been a little bit of smoke and mirrors. Andy Levitre came into this game as a bit of a surprise start given his ongoing triceps issue, but he didn’t last very long, exiting the game after the first drive (or maybe during, I missed it) and now questionable to return with that same triceps injury apparently flaring up. Now Ben Garland is in the game at left guard, and we’ll hope the rest of the line can stay healthy, given that Ty...
The Falcoholic Dec 31, 2017
Five Carolina Panthers questions answered for today’s game

Five Carolina Panthers questions answered for today’s game

With Atlanta off to a hot start, let’s see what Cat Scratch Reader had to say about this game. Dave Choate: Big one, from a concerned Falcons fan: Is Ron Rivera going to follow through on keeping his starters in the game and playing to win, even if there are no stakes here for Carolina? Is injury a concern for you if he does? Brian Beversluis: I think about the only starters they might rest are G Trai Turner and S Kurt Coleman, because those guys are still a little dinged up. That said, Rivera was already quoted as talking about what was “potentially on the line”, so I don’t expect...
The Falcoholic Dec 31, 2017
Falcons vs. Panthers Week 17 open thread, key info, and tracker

Falcons vs. Panthers Week 17 open thread, key info, and tracker

The 9-6 Atlanta Falcons will try to win and get into the postseason as the #6 seed, but the Panthers undoubtedly have other ideas. The Falcons are lined up for either a storybook ending to 2017, or the culmination of a vaguely disappointing year. That’s a fancy way of saying they’re either going to the playoffs or ending the year at 9-7 and spending an offseason figuring out how to get better and dealing with deeply bitter fans. Fun, fun. This is a matchup Atlanta can win on its best day, and if Carolina truly is down Trai Turner and decides to rest some starters, they may not even...
The Falcoholic Dec 31, 2017
Levine Toilolo inactive against Panthers, offensive line starters all active

Levine Toilolo inactive against Panthers, offensive line starters all active

Some good news for the Falcons. The Falcons weren’t certain to have all their offensive line starters healthy and active today, but blessedly, they do. That’s the big takeaway from today’s inactives report, which means that Ben Garland will be available as a backup for any starter who falters. That really is a best-case scenario. Unfortunately, the Falcons will be without the services of backup tight end Levine Toilolo, who has gotten a lot of playing time this year as a blocker and part-time receiver. I’m not sure if the Falcons will simply forego two tight end sets or if Eric...
Cat Scratch Reader Dec 31, 2017
Panthers at Falcons game day inactives: Kurt Coleman, Jonathan Stewart and Trai Turner inactive for Carolina

Panthers at Falcons game day inactives: Kurt Coleman, Jonathan Stewart and Trai Turner inactive for Carolina

The Panthers are again without their starting right guard. The Panthers are in Atlanta to take on the Falcons, and they’ll do so without their starting right guard as Trai Turner was ruled out for today for failure to clear the concussion protocol. Kurt Coleman and Jonathan Stewart are also scratches today. Coleman was questionable heading into the game, and Stewart is being held out due to tightness in his back. Panthers RB Jonathan Stewart inactive after his back tightened up, per team. Have to think if this was first rd of playoffs, Stewart would be playing.— Joe Person...
The Falcoholic Dec 31, 2017
Week 17 NFL early games open thread

Week 17 NFL early games open thread

There’s not a lot of interesting games, sadly. I will be blunt and tell you that there just aren’t really any interesting games on the early slate. Falcons-Panthers and Cardinals-Seahawks are the only two games with significant NFC playoff implications, since they’ll determine who is the #6 seed in the conference, and both of those games don’t start until 4:25 p.m. You’re just watching to watch football right now, not that there’s anything wrong with that. The only early game with remote relevance is Bears-Vikings, which pits the NFC’s presumptive #2 seed against a nettlesome...
Cat Scratch Reader Dec 31, 2017
Panthers at Falcons injury news: Trai Turner remains in concussion protocol, ruled out for today’s game

Panthers at Falcons injury news: Trai Turner remains in concussion protocol, ruled out for today’s game

The Panthers’ right guard wasn’t able to clear the concussion protocol in time to play against the Falcons today. The Panthers will once again be without their starting right guard as Trai Turner was unable to clear the concussion protocol and has been ruled out for day’s game against the Falcons. Guard Trai Turner remains in the concussion protocol and has been ruled OUT for Sunday’s game vs. Atlanta.— Carolina Panthers (@Panthers) December 30, 2017 The Panthers had hoped Turner would be able to suit up today, but unfortunately that isn’t the case. It’s expected that...
The Falcoholic Dec 31, 2017
Falcons - Panthers final score predictions: Do we believe?

Falcons - Panthers final score predictions: Do we believe?

Four Falcoholic writers and editors go to bat for their predicted outcomes. Cory Woodroof Falcons 24 - Panthers 21 Wiith Seattle very likely taking care of business against Arizona, it’s really looking like a win or go home scenario for the Falcons. A divisional game against the Panthers will be a test of tests, as Atlanta must trust their banged-up OL to withstand the formidable Carolina defensive line in a game that already limits what you can do on the ground. Steve Sarkisian needs to trust his offensive weapons (AKA use Julio Jones a lot) in what should be a ferocious matchup for...
The Falcoholic Dec 31, 2017
Falcons vs. Panthers Week 17 channel, odds, announcers, game time and more

Falcons vs. Panthers Week 17 channel, odds, announcers, game time and more

This could be it for Atlanta, so better hope they win. I don’t need to lay out the stakes for you here, because they are evident. The Falcons have overcome a lot of poor games to have a real shot at making the playoffs here, but the only way they can guarantee that outcome is if they win. Considering the Seahawks are playing a mediocre Cardinals team in Seattle, that win is critically important. To get it, they’ll have to go through a Panthers team that would absolutely love to knock them out of the playoffs for the second time in four seasons, and will be rolling out all its...