Atlanta Falcons: Is Michael Turner or Matt Ryan More Important?
For most teams everything goes through their quarterback, and it is him that drives the offense up-and-down the field. Teams that don't have that stud quarterback often weigh heavily on their running back, and will hand off the ball 30-40 times a game to their best running back.
For the Atlanta Falcons things are a little different, because both Matt Ryan and Michael Turner play an equal role in their offensive production.
Matt Ryan is considered by most to be a top 10, and maybe even five, quarterback, and he has shown the ability to create a very good and very dangerous passing offense.
Michael Turner is also considered a top 10 running back, and has the ability to both break off a big run or consistently pick up four or five yards.
The biggest benefit for the Falcons is that they don't need both players to bring their A game to win against most teams in the NFL, as a strong performance by one of the two is enough to get them points.
What makes the Falcons even better is how good they can be when both are on their A game, and Ryan is throwing for over 300 yards while Turner is running for another 100.
Of course when one performs well the other often has better opportunities and follows suit. For example, if Ryan is throwing the ball down-field successfully the opponent may back off their linebackers and defensive backs a bit, leaving more space for Turner.
Neither Ryan nor Turner is more important to the success of the Falcons, and it is the combination of both that makes Atlanta's offense so good.
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