The Arthur Blank Revelation: A Championship Connection

Thom Cunningham@ThomBhombCorrespondent IMay 26, 2009

ATLANTA - OCTOBER 12:  Owner Arthur Blank of the Atlanta Falcons, celebrates after a 22-20 win over the Chicago Bears at the Georgia Dome on October 12, 2008 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

My credentials for this piece go to being a long time Falcons season ticket holder and reading an auto-biography of Ernie Accorsi entitled "The GM".

I ask people all the time, do you know who Ernie Accorsi is? Usually I get a confused look followed by a "No". Ernie Accorsi was the General Manager for the New York Giants before retiring in 2006—the year before New York won a Super Bowl.

Although Accorsi was not with the Giants when they defeated New England, the New York organization still gave him a ring. Why not? Ernie basically built that entire team. He was the man who brought in every player on their championship roster. Every player, but one—Michael Strahan, who was the only player on the Giants championship roster before Accorsi arrived.

It is known that Accorsi's belief to a championship team requires three essentials. The three include a defensive line, offensive line, and quarterback. If you don't believe me, look at the Giants championship roster.

They held the best pass-rushing defensive line, including players such as Osi Umenyiora, Justin Tuck (who I think should've won MVP), Michael Strahan, and Fred Robbins. Their offensive line was also one of the best, and Eli Manning is a winning quarterback with unbelievable composure.

It is fair to say Accorsi deserves a lot of credit for New York's championship ring, but it takes a lot more than a GM to build a championship caliber organization. All great NFL organizations usually begin with great owners. Teams such as Pittsburgh, Dallas, and New York have all been blessed with Hall of Fame owners (The Rooneys, Jerry Jones, and The Maras).

Arthur Blank, in my mind, is on the way to becoming one of those great owners. He bought the Falcons with the mindset of turning that organization into one of the best.

When Atlanta was stabbed in the back by multiple people, the Falcons were at rock bottom. They had the third worst record in the NFL, and probably the worst chemistry too. This is a team that was betrayed by two head coaches and their leader under center.

Blank didn't let the distractions prevent him from building a championship organization. In search of help, Blank called Ernie Accorsi.

After Rich McKay was moved from front office duties, Atlanta hired Thomas Dimintroff as the new GM. Little do most people know that Accorsi and Dimintroff's father worked together in the past. Apparently, Accorsi recommended Dimintroff to Blank which would explain the hire.

Now look at some of the players brought in since Dimintroff was hired: A young offensive line who looked solid last year (along with the best tight end in the NFL), the quarterback who has proven himself on both levels to lead and win, and a defensive tackle who has proven his dominance in college only adds to a pretty impressive D-line.

I'm not saying this player is Michael Strahan, but John Abraham has the talent to become as good as Strahan (not to mention he has the ironic similarity of being a player who was on the Falcons roster before Dimintroff arrived). 

All signs are pointing to an Atlanta championship in the future. Arthur Blank is not just an owner who cares about money or publicity. This owner actually wants to create a successful franchise for years to come (he did it with Home Depot), which money and publicity will soon follow.  

Every move Atlanta has made is similar to the championship team Accorsi built in New York. The fact that New York is one of the dominant organizations in the NFL should also bring confidence to Falcons fans.

As Mos Def says, its simple mathematics. Everything adds up to a championship caliber organization in the near future, and it is all thanks to the man who helped start it (and never stopped finishing it), Arthur Blank.


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