LA Chargers: Getting to know the Week 14 opponent, the Atlanta Falcons

3 of 4
(Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images) – LA Chargers
(Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images) – LA Chargers /

Notable Stats

The Falcons offense is very dangerous. They rank 10th in the NFL in yards per game, sixth in passing yards per game and 13th in points per game. The Falcons have arguably the best wide receiver duo in the league with Calvin Ridley and Julio Jones.

Ridley leads the team in receptions (59), yards (905) and touchdowns (7) while Jones ranks second on the team in those statistics (51, 771, 3). Russell Gage and Hayden Hurst are other receiving options for the Falcons who have had solid years as Gage has brought in 49 catches for 522 yards and two touchdowns with Hurst tallying 42 catches for 468 yards and three touchdowns.

Although he has struggled in recent weeks, Todd Gurley is another player to watch on the Falcons offense. Gurley has totaled 712 total yards on 192 touches with nine touchdowns. Falcons’ quarterback Matt Ryan has completed 63.5% of his pass attempts for 3,436 yards, 18 touchdowns and eight interceptions. Their offense has a ton of talent and distributes the ball well.

The Falcons have given up 31 sacks and have allowed 181 pressures on the year. They have the ninth worth pass-blocking grade according to PFF. This is a good matchup for the Chargers’ pass rushers. They have struggled this season mainly due to injuries to Melvin Ingram, Joey Bosa and Uchenna Nwosu but with Nwosu back in the lineup, Ryan could be facing a lot of pressure.

Former Chargers kicker Younghoe Koo has been one of the best kickers in the NFL this season for the Falcons. He currently leads the NFL in points scored with 119. He has connected on 32 of 33 field-goal attempts with a long of 54 and has made 23 of 26 extra points.

The Falcons’ defense has struggled this season. They are allowing the fourth-most yards per game (409.8) and the third-most passing yards per game (285.2). They have been torched by opposing quarterbacks this season. Through 13 games opposing quarterbacks have completed 68.4% of their passes for 3,432 yards with 24 touchdowns and eight interceptions while allowing a passer rating of 102.9

While they have struggled, their defense has quite a few good players who can make an impact on this game. Defensive tackle Grady Jarrett has recorded three sacks and nine tackles for loss on the year and is ranked by PFF as a top 10 interior defensive lineman.

Deion Jones is one of the best coverage linebackers in the NFL and he showed that with a 67-yard pick-six against the Raiders. Jones also leads the Falcons in sacks with 3.5 and is tied for the team lead in interceptions with two.