Falcons line still huge question mark after loss

7:41 PM, Sep 9, 2013   |    comments
Matt Ryan calls signals behind center against the Carolina Panthers during the third quarter at the Georgia Dome. The Falcons defeated the Panthers 30-28. (Photo: Dale Zanine-US PRESSWIRE)
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FLOWERY BRANCH, Ga. (AP) - The Atlanta Falcons have some of the NFL's most dynamic offensive players.

Matt Ryan. Julio Jones. Roddy White. Tony Gonzalez. Steven Jackson.

It may not matter if they don't get better blocking up front.

The offensive linemen were a giant question mark coming into the season, and they did nothing to alleviate those concerns in a 23-17 loss to the New Orleans Saints in the season opener.

Coach Mike Smith insisted Monday he's "absolutely confident" the team has the right group of linemen to get the job done. But Ryan was constantly pressured by the Saints, who had one of the worst defenses in NFL history last season.

Smith says he expects a "large improvement" when the Falcons host the St. Louis Rams (1-0) on Sunday at the Georgia Dome.

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)









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