Mike Smith's poor clock management, questionable calls and generally conservative coaching made it hard on the Falcons Sunday.
Ultimately though, it's hard to question a coach that has just won his 10th game on the season
Dirk Koetter kept trying to force Turner up the gut to start the quarter, a gameplan that was quickly replaced with having Ryan throw five straight passes before having Turner take the ball outside for a touchdown.
Mike Smith, for all the criticism he's gotten for being too conservative, perhaps went too aggressive when he had Bryant attempt a 48-yard kick with 13 seconds left to play after previously missing a 22-yarder, instead of having Matt Bosher punt the ball away. It didn't matter in the end, as the Falcons were able to secure the win.
Nolan went to the well one too many times and it cost him, with his designed cornerback blitz allowing Vincent Jackson to fly by Thomas Decoud for a long completion on the half's opening drive, eventually leading to a Tampa Bay field goal.
Meanwhile, Koetter finally took advantage of Tampa Bay's last-ranked pass defense with a long pass to Jones for a touchdown.
Koetter wisely opened up passing game in second half and made key call on 3rd and 1 at Tampa Bay's 5-yard line, having Ryan toss the ball to Rodgers from the shotgun for him to run it in for a touchdown instead of trying to pound it inside. He kept a good mix of Turner and Rodgers on the ground while having Ryan make deep throws downfield.
On defense, Nolan kept the pressure on, notably dialing a cornerback blitz that worked to perfection in a quarter saw Tampa Bay held to just a field goal.
Questionable clock management at the end of the half lowers this grade, however, with Smith late to call a time out that ultimately cost the Falcons points.
On offense, Koetter reverted back to a Mike Mularkey-esque gameplan in the first quarter, testing Tampa Bay's top-ranked run defense with a 1-2 punch of Turner and Rodgers while having Ryan dink-and-dunk up the field. It worked well until Koetter called a Rodgers slip screen on 3rd and 3 from inside Tampa Bay's 15-yard line instead of going for the end zone.
Defensively, Nolan's calls were no match for Freeman, who seemingly had the perfect play called every time.