The Atlanta Falcons are going to be happy not to face any AFC East opponents for a while after this week.
Atlanta lost last season’s Super Bowl in epic fashion to the New England Patriots 34-28 in overtime, after blowing a 28-3 third-quarter lead. This season, the Falcons were tasked with playing not only the Patriots, but the entire AFC East — strangely, in consecutive weeks. The last of the four comes Sunday at MetLife Stadium, when they take on the New York Jets (3-4).
Quarterback Andy Dalton, who threw for only 34 yards and had two passes picked off after halftime in Pittsburgh, said Cincinnati can’t dwell on its repeated failures against the Steelers.
“The Steelers are just one team,” he said. “They aren’t the only team we play. It is not about us against the Steelers, it’s about us playing well and beating whoever we are playing.”
The Los Angeles Chargers will present an interesting challenge for the New England Patriots on Sunday at Gillette Stadium.
The Chargers celebrated their move to Los Angles by losing their first four games of the season, with Philip Rivers throwing six touchdown passes and five interceptions.
Since that start, though, Los Angeles has won three straight — and Rivers has thrown for six touchdowns and no picks.
That, of course, could present a problem for New England (5-2), which last week shut down a Falcons attack that for some reason decided running the ball early was a key. Atlanta’s Matt Ryan became the first quarterback this season to not throw for 300 yards against the Patriots.
Prior to New England’s easy 23-7 win over the Falcons on Sunday night, the Patriots became the first team in NFL history to allow at least 300 yards passing in each of its first six games.