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The Falcons turned in another solid effort on special teams, providing them the necessary boost to play a close, competitive game against the 49ers.
The signature play was the brilliant onside kick recovered by Jason Snelling near the end of the game. It potentially gave the Falcons a chance to take the lead late before NaVorro Bowman's game-sealing pick-six.
Matt Bosher's onside kick skipped perfectly off the turf and went under the arms of Bowman, where Snelling made an excellent one-handed scoop before the ball went out of bounds. That set up the Falcons deep in 49er territory, starting the ensuing drive at the 30-yard line.
Bosher had an excellent performance, punting five times for an average of 48.8 yards with two kicks placed inside the 20-yard line.
The Falcons also got a boost from their return game. Robert McClain had a nice 22-yard punt return that set up a scoring drive at the end of the first half with good field position. The Falcons were able to start that drive at the 49ers' 47-yard line before ultimately kicking a 35-yard field goal to take a 10-3 halftime lead.
Then in the fourth quarter, Jacquizz Rodgers had a nice 30-yard return that set up the scoring drive that breathed new life in the Falcons offense in the second half. That drive ended in the 39-yard touchdown pass from Matt Ryan to Roddy White.
Overall, it was a good day for the Falcons special teams unit, and it's been a unit that has steadily grown into a strength with players like Bosher, McClain, Snelling and Rodgers readily making plays.