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Panthers vs. Falcons: Mike Smith expects great crowd on Sunday

Atlanta Falcons head coach Mike Smith is expecting the Georgia Dome crowd to give a good atmosphere as the Falcons play the Carolina Panthers on Sunday.

Jake Roth-US PRESSWIRE - Presswire

Atlanta Falcons head coach Mike Smith expects a great crowd at Sunday's game against the Carolina Panthers. This game will be the Falcons' first game this season not only against a division opponent, but against a fellow NFC team.

In his interview after practice on Thursday, Smith talked about how the crowd will add to the atmosphere:

Ultimately, the first step in any season is to try and win your division. To win your division, you have to beat division opponents so it'll be a fun afternoon. I know that the fans have a good rivalry with Carolina and they'll probably bring some folks over as well.

Smith talked about other things in his Thursday interview, including the return of the regular NFL officials:

"I'm looking forward to having the experienced guys back. In terms of our preparation, it's not going to change the way we prepare. We have a big challenge this week with Carolina, but definitely glad to have the experienced guys back."

The Falcons play the Panthers on Sunday with kickoff scheduled for 1 p.m. It will be televised on FOX.

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