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Quarterback Matt Ryan has another shot at a happy homecoming.
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Quarterback Matt Ryan has another shot at a happy homecoming.
A berth in the NFC championship game is at stake when Ryan leads the Atlanta Falcons (11-6) against the Philadelphia Eagles (13-3) in a divisional playoff Saturday. Ryan Cody Barton Jersey , who grew up rooting for the Eagles and went to Philadelphia’s William Penn Charter School, is 1-3 at the Linc.“I’m used to it now,” Ryan said about returning home. “Playing as long as I have, I understand regardless of where we play you have to be at your best every week. The one nice part is there will be a lot of familiar faces, friendly faces after the game, which is always nice.”Ryan had his worst game of his MVP season last year in Atlanta’s 24-15 loss in Philly on Nov. 13, 2016. He was 18 of 33 for 267 yards with one touchdown and one interception.“Obviously, there will be some scheme from that game that we’ll take, what went well and what didn’t go well and try to improve on that,” Ryan said. “We’re a different team than we were last year when we played them and they’re a different team. It will be some carry over, but it will be a little bit different.”Here’s some things to watch for when the teams meet in the playoffs for the first time since Philadelphia’s win over Michael Vick’s Falcons in the 2005 NFC championship game:NICK’S UP: Nick Foles makes his fourth start since replacing Carson Wentz after the MVP candidate tore his ACL in Week 14. Foles played well in his first five quarters and struggled in the next five. He’s certainly a dropoff from Wentz, but he’s also capable of spectacular performances. Wentz once tossed seven TDs in a game in 2013. He had four TDs in his first start in Week 15.“There’s enough substance behind his career that merits having confidence,” Eagles offensive coordinator Frank Reich said.`NORTHEAST’ NOISE: There’s crowd noise, and then there’s the noise generated by Philadelphia fans known for their intensity.Falcons coach Dan Quinn seemed to search for a polite term to compare Eagles fans with the fans the team heard in last week’s wild-card win at the Los Angeles Rams.“I’m not going to say more passionate, but I would say more Northeast,” Quinn said with a smile.The Falcons have pumped in artificial noise in practice this week but will lean heavily on Ryan and center Alex Mack to use their experience with silent counts and hand signals.“That’s huge,” said tight end Levine Toilolo. “That’s where it all starts http://www.cardinalsauthorizedshops.com/...len-jersey , coming off the ball, the cadence and stuff like that. We definitely work on that every week. Their fans, we’re expecting a loud crowd in a big playoff game.”Mack said he expects Philadelphia’s fans “to be really dedicated, really loud, really involved. So it’s going to be a challenge just in terms of crowd noise.”COMFORT ZONE: After leading the league in scoring in 2016, the Falcons finished the regular season 15th with first-year offensive coordinator Steve Sarkisian.Atlanta averaged 22.1 points per game, down from 33.8 last season.Ryan says he has become more comfortable with Sarkisian, especially the last two weeks in wins over Carolina and the Rams.“I think Sark has done a great job of finding who we are week to week, specifically the last two weeks I think he’s done a great job,” Ryan said.STOPPING JULIO: The Eagles had some success against Julio Jones in their win last year, keeping him out of the end zone but allowing 10 catches for 135 yards. Jalen Mills held him to four catches for 48 yards when he was matched up against Jones. The second-year pro is confident he can contain Jones again. Ronald Darby will have to cover Jones when he’s on his side.“You have to think the ball is coming to him each and every play,” Mills said. “Whether they’re having a run or a pass play, you’ve just got to think the ball is coming to him.”MULTIPLE BACKS: Both teams have options in the backfield. The Falcons are led by Devonta Freeman, who had 865 yards rushing and seven TDs. Tevin Coleman had 628 yards rushing and five TDs. LeGarrette Blount led the Eagles with 766 yards rushing and scored two TDs. Jay Ajayi had 873 yards rushing and one TD combined with the Dolphins and Eagles. He ran for 130 yards against Atlanta in Miami’s win on Oct. 15.——AP Sports Writer Charles Odum contributed to this report.——AP NFL website: http://www.pro32.ap.org and http://www.twitter.com/AP–NFL EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) — After a week of being beaten up in the media over the trade of popular star receiver Odell Beckham Jr., general manager Dave Gettleman went on the offensive, saying the trade was in the best interests of the New York Giants and was a deal the organization could not refuse.Gettleman didn’t stop there Monday Gary Jennings Jr. Jersey , speaking for the first time since sending Beckham to the Cleveland Browns last week in return for first- and third-round draft picks this year and safety Jabrill Peppers.The executive also defended quarterback Eli Manning, saying the belief the 38-year-old two-time Super Bowl MVP can’t play well anymore is a “crock.” He laughed off the idea that the trade for 29-year-old guard Kevin Zeitler and the free agent signing of 34-year-old safety Antoine Bethea gave the Giants a couple of old players, saying both are good players and good people.When pushed about what is his plan for the Giants after winning three games in 2017 and five last season, Gettleman basically told reporters it was none of their business. He said the team is building, it has a master plan that would become apparent over time, and he would be judged by how it worked out over the next few years.In discussing Beckham, Gettleman said he only approached the Bills about a deal for the 26-year-old wideout — partly because he heard Buffalo might be getting receiver Antonio Brown from Pittsburgh, and the other part was his friendship with Bills general manager Brandon Beane, who worked for him in Carolina.Gettleman did not shop the three-time Pro Bowler because he felt doing that would not give him the upper hand in trade talks. He said the San Francisco 49ers called and the teams had numerous conversations without reaching a deal.Once Browns general manager John Dorsey called on Tuesday, it took 10 hours to work out the deal. It was finalized over the weekend when Beckham and Peppers passed physicals, Gettleman said.The obvious question is why get rid of the guy who has been the record-setting catalyst of the Giants’ offense since being the No. 12 pick overall in 2014 and the Offensive Rookie of the Year that season.“That’s the question everybody asks,” Gettleman said. “After much discussion we believe this was in the best interests of the New York Football Giants. I want everyone to know this was purely a football business decision. There is no intrigue. No he said, she said. None of that stuff.”Gettleman called Beckham a tremendous talent, but said the Giants got three assets in return, at the very least.“Because of Odell’s talent and personality, this was a decision we did not enter into lightly,” said Gettleman Phil Haynes Jersey , who has run the Giants since Jerry Reese was fired in December 2017. “There were a number of factors to take into consideration and I can assure you we thoroughly discussed them all.”The 68-year-old GM said he knows the Giants did not sign Beckham last summer to a $90 million deal to trade him, but things changed when the Browns made a value-packed offer that “knocked it out of the park” and allowed New York to address multiple positions on a team coming off a 5-11 record.Gettleman says the litmus tests for trading a star player is the value of what a team would get if it lost a player who had a franchise tag: two first-round picks. He says the Giants got that in Peppers plus the No. 17 overall pick and a third-rounder. He added that time will tell whether the Giants made a good deal.The recent personnel moves have put the Giants under a microscope, especially because the team has made the playoffs once (2016) since winning the Super Bowl in February 2012.After the past season, New York did not franchise-tag leading tackler Landon Collins — Gettleman said teams called at the trading deadline last year to ask about acquiring Collins, but no one offered enough; traded sacks leader Olivier Vernon to Cleveland for Zeitler; made the Beckham deal; and stuck with Manning, who got a $5 million roster bonus this week.“This narrative that Eli is overpaid and can’t play is a crock, I’m telling you,” Gettleman said, adding he doesn’t mind if people disagree with him.Gettleman said it was not his responsibility to discuss the Giants’ plan for the future.“Trust me, we have a plan,” he said. “Over time, you have to be patient. Everybody wants the answers now. It’s an instant gratification society. … Over time, you will see it. You have to trust it.”
29-09-2019 4:52
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