Falcons head coach Mike Smith talked about the nuances of a challenging schedule on Monday. At first glance, the Falcons play just one team that went to the playoffs last season before their Week 10 meeting with the Saints -- and that's the Broncos.
Be advised that Smith isn't looking past the quarterbacks in Atlanta's division opponents for a second. Here are quotes from the coach, via the team website:
"I think all four have been challenging in terms of our schedules. Some schedules look one way at the beginning of the season and can be completely different when you get five or six games into it. It's challenging early on through the first quarter of the season. We're going to play three very good quarterbacks that have gone to the Pro Bowl in the first quarter. We break our season down into quarters, and we've got three quarterbacks in our first four games that have been to Pro Bowls. I don't think it's any more challenging than any other year. There is always the unknown when you start the regular season. Everybody is working on different things in the preseason and trying to put their team together, build their team, and get to a 53-man roster. Now that we've done that we're going to get an opportunity to kick off and play. I know our guys are anxious. We haven't started our game planning. We'll start that on Wednesday."
The Falcons open their season against the Chiefs on Sunday at Arrowhead Stadium.