Kevin C. Cox
The Atlanta Falcons feel good about their chances in the playoffs, and are ready to overcome a history of postseason flops.
The Atlanta Falcons are familiar with postseason disappointments, but coaches and players are confident that this year will be different. The Falcons have secured the top seed in the NFC, ensuring that the road to the Super Bowl runs through Atlanta.
The Falcons' core of coach Mike Smith, Matt Ryan, Michael Turner, Roddy White, and Tony Gonzalez is unchanged, but the team has benefited from new additions like Julio Jones, Asante Samuel, and Jacquizz Rodgers.
Despite the lack of major changes, White insists the team is very different because players have matured and chemistry is stronger. Ryan agrees, saying "I think our chemistry is as good as I've ever been around."
Guaranteed home-field advantage is another reassuring factor for the Falcons. At 7-0, they are the NFL's only team without a home loss this season. A win on Sunday against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers would make the Falcons a perfect 8-0 at home, and give the team a three-game winning streak heading into the playoffs.