The Falcons have a win total at the sportsbook of 10 and gamblers who make an NFL bet have been considering the over.
NFL betting odds still favor the Saints to win the NFC South this season but the Falcons are the second choice. Atlanta has a very good coaching staff led by Mike Smith and he has changed the culture in Atlanta to one of winning. The Falcons are led on offense by quarterback Matt Ryan and running back Michael Turner. Last season was not a great one for Turner as he battled injuries much of the year. He should have a big year in 2010 as he is now healthy. The Falcons have a very good tight end in Tony Gonazlez and a great receiver in Roddy White.
The defense had their moments last season but injuries were a problem. Defensive tackle Peria Jerry was hurt in week 2 and missed the rest of the season. His return should help right end John Abraham who did not have his best season in 2009. The Falcons have an excellent linebacker in Curtis Lofton who should have made the Pro Bowl. The problem for Atlanta last season was a secondary that gave up way too many big plays. They were 28th in the NFL against the pass. That is a major problem since they play in the same division as the Saints. They are hoping that the addition of Dunta Robinson will improve the secondary.
Last season the Falcons were beset by injuries and they struggled against a tough schedule. Things should be much better in 2010. The Falcons have a win total of 10 so they would have to win 11 games to go over that total for those making an NFL bet. The Falcons have a winnable opener against Pittsburgh who is without quarterback Ben Roethlisberger. They should beat Arizona before going to New Orleans. They host San Francisco and then go to Cleveland and Philadelphia. A 4-2 start is possible. They have tough home games against Cincinnati and Baltimore but a winnable game vs. Tampa Bay. That would make them 6-3 if they split the games vs. the Bengals and Ravens. They have road games at St. Louis, Tampa, Carolina and Seattle. They should win three of those four which would make them 9-4. They would then need to win two of their three home games vs. Green Bay, New Orleans and Carolina to get to 11 wins.