The dreaded Super Bowl Hangover has ravaged numerous NFL teams over the years, and the Atlanta Falcons could have easily been one of them. When you squander a 25-point lead in the Super Bowl, well, that’s tough to endure.
But the Falcons (9-5) are still alive.
“They’re still in the hunt,” 92.9 The Game host and former All-Pro defensive end Hugh Douglas said on After Hours with Amy Lawrence. “You look at Carolina a few years ago when they went to the Super Bowl and lost, I think around this time of the year they were done. They were done. The Falcons are still alive. They’re still fighting, Coach (Dan) Quinn is still preaching brotherhood, and the guys are still buying into it.”
Atlanta, currently the 6-seed in the NFC, started 3-0 before losing three straight. The Falcons have since won six of eight, including Monday’s 24-21 win in Tampa Bay.
“That game should have been over with at halftime,” Douglas said. “They should have put the Tampa Bay Buccaneers to rest at halftime, but they didn’t. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers fought and it came down to a field goal. (The Falcons) need to put their foot on the gas pedal. They got two games left and they’re not going to be easy.”
The Falcons face the Saints (10-4) in New Orleans this Sunday and host the Panthers (10-4) on Dec. 31. The Saints and Panthers are the fourth and fifth seeds, respectively, in the NFC.
“They’re going to have to figure out something,” Douglas said of the Falcons, “because those two teams, they’re in the playoff hunt as well – and if you want to get in, you got to go through those two.”
Kickoff for both games is at 1 p.m. ET.