Fans of the Falcons aren't the only ones happy about the return of Jonathan Babineaux to the lineup. Head coach Mike Smith had this to say via the incomparable Jay Adams of the official site:
"Jonathan will be the starting defensive tackle for us this week. Jonathan is an integral part of what we want to try to do. Of all of the defensive linemen on our team he probably had the most snaps last year. In our rotation he’s the guy that gets the most snaps of any of the guys. We’re looking forward to getting him back, his ability to penetrate and create negative yardage plays."
By whatever metric you want to use, Babineaux was the Falcons' best defensive lineman last season. His six sacks not only led the Falcons but it tied him for the most by a defensive lineman across the entire NFL. That's what makes the performance the defense delivered last Sunday - without No. 95 in the lineup - all the more impressive.
I can't see how the Cardinals will be able to run the ball against the Falcons' front which means Derek Anderson will be forced to throw and we know how that usually turns out. Last week, I picked the Steelers by 6 so this week I'm going with the Falcons by seven. Call it a 24-17 win in Babineaux's return.