Atlanta Falcons remain top of NFC South with win over Arizona Cardinals

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Matt Ryan of the Atlanta Falcons
Matt Ryan of the Atlanta FalconsKeith Allison/Wikimedia

The Atlanta Falcons beat the Arizona Cardinals Sunday, 38-19, to stay on top of the NFC South as the regular season winds down this year. The Falcons’ offense was to much for the visiting Cardinals squad, which are now likely to miss the postseason after this loss.

The Falcons scored in all four quarters with at least a touchdown, capped by a 14-point fourth quarter to establish the blowout victory.

Taylor Gabriel breaks out

Matt Ryan led the charge with 269 yards on 26-of-34 completions with two touchdowns and an interception. Atlanta had four players with 35-plus receiving yards, led by Taylor Gabriel, who had 75 receiving yards (4 catches) and Mohamad Sanu, who had 65 yards (8 catches).

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The Cardinals were in the game in the first half scoring the first touchdown and had the 10-7 lead early in the second. Back-to-back scores from Atlanta made it 17-13 at halftime for the Falcons.

The Falcons’ defense held up in the third while they scored a touchdown on a 77-yard 13-play series to gain the 24-13 lead before the fourth quarter. Ryan found Gabriel in the middle of the fourth for another touchdown and the Falcons had their biggest lead, 31-13 in the final quarter.

Crucial W for Atlanta

This was a big home win for the Falcons with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers also winning on Sunday. The Bucs (6-5) beat the Seattle Seahawks, 14-5 the same day but are still one game behind the Falcons in the NFC South.


After back-to-back losses to the Seahawks and San Diego Chargers, the Falcons have won three of their last four games to gain leadership in their division. Atlanta faces the Kansas City Chiefs (7-3) and Los Angeles Rams (4-7) in their next two games.

Keith Allison/Wikimedia

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