This afternoon at 4PM Eastern the Atlanta Falcons will face off against the Seattle Seahawks (4 pm ET, FOX) in a game that could have major repercussions down the road in the NFC South. I say this because this is a winnable game, and should be a victory for Atlanta, but too often we see teams overlook opponents and slip up; look no further than the 2010 New Orleans Saints who traveled to Seattle in the playoffs, and left embarrassed.
With the aforementioned Saints playing Jacksonville and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers facing Indianapolis all three of the major players in the NFC South have winnable games. In order for the Falcons to ensure they can keep pace with the 2-1 Saints and Bucs they absolutely have to get the job done today.
Lets face it, there's little reason to think the Falcons can't execute against the Seahawks. They have more talent, better coaching and are simply the better team in every phase of the game. However, there's the old addage 'on any given Sunday', and that's what Atlanta will need to ensure they avoid.
Injuries will play a small role with the Falcons missing Jonathan Babineaux, Stephen Nicholas and Jason Snelling, while Seattle will be without Robert Gallery and it appears they'll also be missing Kam Chancellor and Byron Maxwell. These injuries hit the Seahawks harder than Atlanta, and I expect Mike Mularkey will take advantage of a depleted secondary to get big gains through the air.
Your Fox announcers today will be Craig Bolerjack and former Buccaneers safety, turned announcer John Lynch. Seattle are looking at some early showers, but should be clearing up by game time with a field temperature right around 65 degrees.