Im not one http://www.atlantafalconsteamonline.com/matt-bosher-jersey to advocate for panic. Panic, especially four games into a season, is generally counterproductive at best and foolish at worst. It forces us into hot takes and causes us not to have patience, patience that has often proven warranted for the Falcons under Dan Quinn. They were Super Bowl team two years ago and an NFC Divisional Round team one year ago, after all. You cant seriously advocate for firing Dan Quinn.But you can panic about this team now. You can panic because they have to go on the road and face the Steelers next, and their defense has now surrendered an astonishing 80 points over the last two weeks. Theyve been beaten on the ground, theyve been beaten out of the backfield, theyve been beaten on shallow passes and theyve been beaten deep. Theyve missed tackles, shown poor communication, and made costly errors of execution that include dumb penalties and dropped interception chances. The Falcons could do more on offense, the refs made a bad call on Daltons fumble-that-wasnt today Womens Brandon Fusco Jersey , and a thousand other small variables. Yet the defense has been the obvious, primary reason Atlanta has lost their last two games, and theres a good chance theyll be 1-4 before they even get a breather on a run of quality offenses.In light of that, the Falcons need to make a hard choice. They can either accept that their defense is a major liability, give the unit they have an opportunity to grow and try to win in the meantime with stellar offense, or they can make moves. They can take a hard look at the way they manage their defense and handle the clock, which hurt them each of the last two weeks, and they can scour free agency and trade opportunities for improvement. They could swing for the fences and give up a lot for Earl Thomas on the understanding that it will have significant long-term ramifications for their cap space, who they keep, and what theyre able to pick up in the draft next year. But they need to be realistic about what all of those options entail, and the fact that even if they dont touch their personnel, something has to change in the way this team rolls out its personnel to give them a fighting chance. Coaching staffs and teams more generally have trouble letting go of their slogans. Quinn has had a lot of success here because hes relentlessly positive Womens Desmond Trufant Jersey , because he protects his players from the outside world as much as possible, and because this team refuses to admit theyre down and out. That has served this team well, but it can also prove to be a blinding sort of light when you need to properly navigate the darkness ahead. Atlanta has a lot of tough conversations ahead about the way Quinn and company handled that last Bengals drive, holding on to their timeouts until it was too late, and more broadly whether the men on the field can get the job done if theyre given more time and more opportunities to succeed. I recognize the impossible task facing these Falcons. No one wants to admit that the primary reason this defense is so bad is that its minus Deion Jones, Keanu Neal and Ricardo Allen, but thats precisely why it is. Allen was the quarterback of the defense, and the confusion in coverage that has been evident since he went down is killing this defense. They were already bad minus their tone-setting safety and game-changing middle linebacker, but there are some holes you cant fill, no matter how game Duke Riley has appeared over the last couple of weeks and no matter how much urgency Damontae Kazee plays with. Theyre not going to be able to go out in free agency or the trade market and simply replace those guys. They cant, but the defense doesnt need to be ruinous, either. Yet it would be a mistake to fall back on talking about a tough ass group of men and the next man up and variations of not listening to the heated criticism going on outside of Flowery Branch Authentic Austin Hooper Jersey , though at least in public-facing forums I expect Quinn will do exactly that while acknowledging this team has fallen short. The most important thing is that the Falcons realize they are not yet mathematically dead, and that this blessed offense gives them opportunities to win every week. Thebrutal truth is that they need to stop squandering those, stop trying to to pretend things will be okay if they just keep pushing forward, and find a way to salvage a season that started out with such vibrant promise.If they dont, well spend a long time looking back at 2018s rash of injuries and stubbornness and wonder what might have been.What We Learned: Falcons vs. Saints A gritty rivalry between two NFC South teams resulted in an overtime loss for the Falcons. Here is what we learned from the annual matchup with the Saints. The rivalry between the Atlanta Falcons and the New Orleans Saints goes way beyond the football. Theres pure hatred and very little respect between the respective cities and fan bases. When these two teams meet on the gridiron, there is a sure bet for fireworks to occur. This edition of the rivalry was no exception. The 43-37 loss is a bitter one, and in the midst of the game, the Falcons lost an underrated piece of their defense in safety Ricardo Allen to a season-ending Achilles injury (thanks Adam Caplan). They also unquestionably showed why the losses of Deion Jones and Keanu Neal were monumental in their own right. I know some fans may not want to hear it either, but the tackling by the Falcons defense was an eyesore, and Im being nice. The arrival of a special receiver was also the talk of the game here as rookie Calvin Ridley introduced himself to the Saints and the rivalry with seven catches for 146 yards and three touchdowns, including a beautiful 75-yard touchdown reception. Play calling from offensive coordinator Steve Sarkisian was excellent, and for the second week in a row http://www.atlantafalconsteamonline.com/ricardo-allen-jersey , the second-year assistant drew fewer and fewer critics. Jason Getz-USA TODAY SportsI refuse to jump the gun here, but the way the offense has played after their flat display against Philadelphia in Week 1 is a very welcome sight. This is without the services of their No. 1 running back and now their starting left guard, who is on injured reserve for the rest of the season. But this was a game that had an equal share of good and bad. The bad in this matchup was evident in all four quarters, and it is something that you dont expect to see from a team that is a full season removed from a Super Bowl appearance. The amount of injuries on this team is enough to make any team or any head coach considerably worried. Ironically, it was a team that had a machine on offense and a so-so defensive unit that won 11 games in 2016 and found themselves Super Bowl bound. History could repeat itself with this team. However, the odds are not reliable. Not only will the players on the field have to step up, but more is being called for from the coaching staff. As we saw in this game against New Orleans, decision making, even in the early stages of the game, can prove to be critical in a one-score loss. The season is far from lost for the Falcons. Its not even the end of the opening month of the season. However, circumstances such as this will be a real test for the entire franchise. From top to bottom.