If Arthur Smith didn’t consider he may repair the Falcons, he in all probability wouldn’t have been employed to educate the Falcons within the first place. Arthur Clean and Wealthy McKay could be extra sanguine about this crew’s fortunes behind the scenes than they’re publicly, however each made it clear they’re not anticipating Atlanta to be horrible once more in 2021, and positively not past that.
It’s going to be as much as Terry Fontenot to pinch the pennies, have a clear-eyed have a look at constructing this roster over the lengthy haul, and have a look at this crew with probably the most vital eye potential. That’s to not counsel that Smith doesn’t have vital enter into that or that he must be a cheerleader for gamers on shaky floor in Atlanta; fairly the opposite. However the coach can not merely throw his arms up and say he can’t win with the roster readily available, and Smith just isn’t the type of man who seems able to ever even think about that within the first place.
In my view, I consider Smith took this job with a really clear, very simple outlook: That the Falcons had been doomed not simply by and even primarily by an absence of expertise, however by teaching and tradition gone awry. That’s my opinion, I’d wish to stress, but it surely’s one I consider is backed up if you perform a little studying between the strains with all of the feedback Smith has made since he was employed.
From Jeff Schultz’s current movie session with Smith:
“The factor you may say is that this, as a result of I don’t need to be vital of people that had been right here,” Smith stated. “You’re going to study loads about somebody in tight soccer video games. If you name performs in a decent soccer recreation, your character goes to indicate.”
“For no matter cause, doubt crept in, like they had been ready for one thing unhealthy to occur,” he stated. “I’ve been on unhealthy soccer groups that weren’t assured. However (at Tennessee) once we received into one-score video games, we thought we had been going to win. We did. That was our mentality. It comes all the way down to guys being assured situationally and trusting one another. It’s only a mentality.”
From his introductory presser:
The very first thing Arthur Smith says dropping the entitlement can be an enormous message within the locker room. All about accountability and adaptableness. #Falcons
— Kelsey Conway (@FalconsKelsey) January 19, 2021
Arthur Smith: “The worst factor you are able to do is go rent a bunch of sure males in your employees … you have to problem one another.”
— William McFadden (@willmcfadden) January 19, 2021
Arthur Smith: “There’s a whole lot of expertise right here that we need to construct off of.”
— William McFadden (@willmcfadden) January 19, 2021
There’s extra, however I believe you get the gist. The Falcons want, as Smith has all however stated, a modified tradition, one the place
Smith didn’t signal on for this job considering this crew was going to be rubbish for the foreseeable future, and he clearly believes he’s recognized the methods this crew lacked confidence and lacked good teaching which may’ve lifted them in these one-score losses and all through their missed crimson zone alternatives. The Falcons weren’t a great soccer crew in 2020, to be clear. They did lose 9 video games by a single rating, steadily as a consequence of cartoonishly unhealthy performs just like the Cowboys onside kick fiasco, stalled, stale and predictable must-score drives from this past irritating offense, and a too-lax protection that couldn’t provide you with an enormous play on the proper time. It’s logical to assume that Smith, having binge-watched the 2020 season and after presumably throwing up in a trash can someplace, would see a hand-picked employees and a philosophical bent for aggressiveness on each side of the ball as a technique to no less than mitigate late recreation wobbliness.
If Atlanta’s going to be aggressive in 2021, it must be. The Falcons nonetheless have the draft forward and a summer season the place they will add extra expertise in the event that they unencumber more money, however they’re going to be rolling with stopgap starters and younger gamers in vital spots as a result of they merely do not need the cap area to make extra sweeping modifications. In a dialog on the Bussin’ With the Boys podcast, Smith admitted the crew doesn’t have money and can be reliant on undrafted free brokers this summer season to a major diploma, and that alone is a major impediment to 2021 rivalry. The truth that Atlanta has a lot of the elements they’ll want for a high-powered offense is the perfect cause to consider on this crew, however defensively their path to decency relies upon very closely on who they get within the draft and Dean Pees’ acumen because the defensive coordinator. As we speak, you possibly can not credibly declare that this crew has multiple confirmed starter within the secondary and, in addition to Grady Jarrett and perhaps Dante Fowler if he bounces again, any of the elements mandatory for a high quality cross rush. Realistically, it’s going to take multiple offseason for them to get all of the items they should overhaul that, however we do know that an excellent offense and even semi-competent protection can get you locations in right this moment’s NFL.
In abstract, Smith has a stage of self-belief and perception in his teaching employees that’s not atypical for an NFL head coach, and fierce perception alone isn’t going to carry this crew out of the terrible rut they’ve discovered themselves in over the previous three years. What’s clear sufficient, although, is that Arthur Smith thinks he can work with the expertise readily available, particularly on offense, and get a lot, rather more out of the 2021 Atlanta Falcons. That perception could butt up in opposition to harsh actuality quickly sufficient, however I’m not prepared to wager in opposition to Smith getting the Falcons adjoining to rivalry simply by getting extra out of the expertise readily available. Neither, it’s apparent sufficient, is Arthur Smith.