The Atlanta Falcons have struggled on special teams through the first three weeks of the season giving up long returns to the Cardinals and the Saints. They'll get another chance to fix their mistakes this Sunday against the San Francisco 49ers. The 49ers rookie kick returner, Kyle Williams, offered his thoughts on the Falcons third unit.
From the 49ers official site:
When I looked at Eric Weems on the Falcons, who does both kick and punt returns, I noticed how quickly he starts to get down the field. The second he catches the ball he begins moving north to south, which is something I think I need to work on.
Atlanta does a pretty good job of opening holes for Weems, and once those holes are there he hits them pretty well. This is a guy who had more than 1,000 kick return yards last season, but I know if we can play smart and stick to our assignments we should be able to contain him.
Atlanta’s kicker, Matt Bryant, is a pretty good player. He hit a game-winner against the Saints last week, but personally, I’m more concerned with what he does on the kickoffs. Bryant and their punter Michael Koenen do a god job of putting some air under the ball, so I have to make sure I look it all the way in.
Williams also added:
But going back to the Falcons, everything I have seen from them looks pretty good. They fly around on special teams and they make plays. They’re going to make it difficult for us, but once again, it’s a matter of us executing and getting our jobs done. I’m confident we’ll make plays.
The 49ers will need to make some plays on special teams if they have any hope of pulling an upset. It has been the Falcons only weakness this year and if they can avoid a letdown on those plays, their talent level on offense and defense will be too great to overcome.