Brad Biggs' gives his definition of a "number one receiver" in this abbreviated mailbag column over at the Sun-Times. Believe it or not, I actual got texts from people claiming we should have traded for Brandon Marshall (6:11 ET Sunday) and Braylon Edwards (11:01 ET Monday). This coming off a weekend where media and fans seem to be pining for the quarterbacks and running backs of yesteryear. Why? Because nobody in Chicago seems to notice that our defense gives up third-and-longers faster than the French gave up France to the Nazis while our offense WILL carry us into the playoffs.
Matty Ice has only been sacked twice in four game this season. That's the same number of times as Peyton Manning. Goal number one: hit him.
Goal number two is cover Roddy White and if this job is bestowed upon anyone other than Charles Tillman then the coaching staff has done a poor job.
Here's the Falcons' quarterly report from head coach Mike Smith. The article opens, "It could be better but not by a whole lot. The Falcons are a quarter of the way through the 2009 season with a 3-1 mark, one game behind the New Orleans Saints in the NFC South." 3-1 in some parts of the country is a positive thing.
Another stat of note: the Falcons are 20th in the league in yards allowed and 5th in points allowed. "What does this mean, Jeff?" I'll tell you. It means they're the kind of defense that will give you sixty yards and make you kick field goals. (Remind you of anyone?) It also means that if you don't execute down in the red zone, you'll end up chasing them in the fourth quarter. Ron Turner and Jay Cutler have said the focus has been on red zone/third downs during the bye week. We'll find out on Sunday night.
Final point. Never discount the playoff implications of a ballgame like this. People will tell you "it's early" but not in this case. These are two playoff-caliber teams. This game could be a much bigger deal in January.