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Atlanta Falcons Think 'Swagger' Is Key To Making Next Step

After losing their third consecutive playoff game under head coach Mike Smith and QB Matt Ryan in 2011, the Atlanta Falcons have been trying to take the next step as a franchise in 2012.

Do they need to upgrade their talent base? Change their personnel formations? According to Falcons GM Thomas Dimitroff, the answer is even more basic:

"Teams [that had success in the playoffs] have had swagger, belief and drive to finish every play. And a belief there was no one in the NFL that could take them down. There's something special about that."

Dimitroff was the head of college scouting for the New England Patriots between 2002-2007, when the franchise won three Super Bowls in four years.

He's been the most successful member of the now dubious Patriots coaching tree (Scott Pioli, Romeo Crennel, Eric Mangini, Charlie Weis, Josh McDaniels) that learned under Bill Belichick in New England.

As they've all found out in their next NFL spots, things like swagger and belief are a lot easier to muster up when Tom Brady is under center.

For more on the Atlanta Falcons be sure to check out The Falcoholic. For more news and notes from around the NFL head over to SB Nation's NFL page.

Photographs by coka_koehler used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.