With yesterday afternoon's practice, so closed the public portion of the 2012 Atlanta Falcons training camp. If you planned to head down to Flowery Branch over the next week you best be prepared for disappointment. Teams will play their most bland, vanilla, standard schemes over the next few weeks in public, while behind closed door they're really installing their offensive variations, and adding wrinkles into their system.
It's always really hard to derive too much information from the first preseason game, but if I was betting on what possible wrinkles Dirk Koetter could be installing on offense I'd gamble on more packages with Jacquizz Rodgers. He got ten touches in Thursday's game, and while he didn't necessarily do anything amazing enough to instill faith, but I wouldn't be surprised if the already RB happy Koetter finds a way to get both Rodgers and Turner on the field at the same time.
On the other side of the ball a premium has to be placed on the pass rush. We heard a lot of big statements regarding schematic confusion, and 4-3/3-4 hybrid defenses out of the mouths of Mike Nolan and the players, but after the first team came out, the defense was decidedly average. Jonathan Massaquoi was active all night, and while early he looked like he has the potential to develop into something special. It wouldn't surprise me if he gets a lot of opportunities in a hybrid defense.
We probably wont get a real sense of what the 2012 Falcons will look like until the regular season starts. Sometimes the media are allowed into practices, but even if they are they mostly hold to a tacit rule that they don't communicate it to the public. Some teams may show flashes of their bases schemes in the second and third preseason games, but for a veteran team like Atlanta this is unlikely, even with new coordinators.
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