It’s as if Atlanta Falcons head coach Arthur Smith is purposely making his own job harder than it has to be. I can’t imagine the motivation behind this level of self-sabotage, or if it’s an ego thing where he’s trying to prove how he can maximize middling talent, but it’s equal parts frustrating and hilarious to behold.
When the Falcons defense forced a fumble and returned it to the Vikings 1 on Sunday, Smith had the world at his feet. Call possibly literally any single play to gain a single yard. You know, go nuts and maybe get the ball in the hands of one of your one, two, three best skill position players.
Here’s how it actually played out:
The Falcons had 1st and goal from the 1-yard line.
False Start Pass to Jonnu Smith Rush by Jonnu Smith Rush by Tyler Allgeier Field Goal
We really have to stop reducing the Arthur Smith stuff to "fantasy." The front office is happy there's a No. 8 overall running back who is on the sideline for the majority of the most important snaps when Taylor Heinicke is at quarterback?
Not only is it coaching malpractice not to deploy Bijan Robinson in a situation where you need one yard — we’re talking Marshawn Lynch in the Super Bowl-caliber dereliction of duty here — but it’s baffling that you’d go to Jonnu Smith twice. The second play was a run, too!
The Falcons spent a top-four draft pick on Kyle Pitts. He plays tight end but is not your typical guy at that position. Let me ask y’all this: Would you rather give a jet sweep to a tight end who ran a 4.62-second 40-yard dash (1.64s 10-yard split) entering the NFL all the way back in 2017, or to a guy who ran a 4.40 flat (1.52s 10y split) in 2021?
Just looking at those raw numbers on paper, it’s a literal no-brainer. You have to be a blinding idiot to hand it to the first guy. But that’s what Arthur Smith did. Tell me Arthur, what did you expect to happen?
The people are CRYING out for justice, Mr. Smith! What are you DOING with Bijan Robinson and Kyle Pitts!?
Is it a last-name preferential treatment operation you’re running over there in Atlanta??
I don't know how you design a redzone offense without Kyle Pitts and Bijan Robinson. Why spend premium picks on those players if you aren't going to feature them? This has been asked a million times and Arthur Smith still has no answer.
All due respect to Tyler Allgeier — who ran for over 1,000 yards last year as a rookie and happens to be my spot starter on my decimated fantasy team today — he ain’t Bijan Robinson. Not in the same class of player. Few are in Bijan’s stratosphere. It’s not a slight. It’s fact.
"Saying Bijan Robinson > Tyler Allgeier is toxic groupthink."