Power rankings roundup: Falcons tumble after demoralizing loss

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Week 1 went about as bad as it could have possibly gone for the Falcons, and while not many expected much from this team in 2021, it goes without saying that Sunday’s loss to the Eagles was worse than most of us could have imagined. The offense sputtered, the defense looked bad as usual, and the kicking game remains Atlanta’s biggest asset.

A week ago, the Falcons were floating around the low-to-mid-20s in most NFL power rankings. Following Sunday’s loss, the team has since sunk even lower. Here’s our latest power rankings roundup after Week 1.

USA TODAY | Falcons: No. 31 (-5)

Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports

Until we start seeing some real production from the rookie tight end, the growing conversation on whether or not the Falcons made the right decision on draft night will only get louder. Kyle Pitts ended the game with just four catches on 31 yards. Not the start many expected for both the player and the team.

"They looked like a team that should have drafted Fields fourth overall and started completely over, no?" -- USA TODAY's Nate Davis

NFC South rival rankings

  • Buccaneers: No. 1 (-)

  • Saints: No. 5 (+16)

  • Panthers: No. 23 (-)

Week 2 opponent ranking

  • Buccaneers: No. 1

Read USA TODAY's full power rankings here.

Touchdown Wire | Falcons: No. 27 (-1)

Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

The Falcons' offense completely fell apart after the second drive of the game. The issues that new head coach Arthur Smith was supposed to fix still remain as the team failed to score a touchdown despite twice driving inside the 10-yard line.

"The Falcons offense wasn’t expected to be the group it was against the Eagles and they never really kept this one close. Expect Atlanta to at least be better on that side of the ball in the future… and hope their defense is as well… which can only go up." -- TD Wire's Nick Wojton

NFC South rival rankings

  • Buccaneers: No. 1 (-)

  • Saints: No. 8 (+9)

  • Panthers: No. 23 (+1)

Week 2 opponent ranking

  • Buccaneers: No. 1

Read Touchdown Wire's full rankings here.

NFL.com | Falcons: No. 28 (-2)

(AP Photo/John Bazemore)

In 2020, Matt Ryan started 0-2 for the first time in his career. After Sunday's loss, he's staring down the barrel of an 0-2 start in back-to-back seasons.

On Sunday, Atlanta fired off a bunch of duds. The Falcons managed just two field goals and didn't have a play from scrimmage that went beyond 18 yards in a 32-6 loss to the Eagles. Struggles on defense are expected in Atlanta this season, but Sunday's putrid performance by the offense needs to be an aberration ... or else." -- NFL.com's Dan Hanzus

NFC South rival rankings

  • Buccaneers: No. 1 (-)

  • Saints: No. 10 (+5)

  • Panthers: No. 25 (+2)

Week 2 opponent ranking

  • Buccaneers: No. 1

Read NFL.com's full rankings here.

CBS Sports | Falcons: No. 29 (-7)

(AP Photo/John Bazemore)

The Falcons' defense struggled immensely and the Eagles ballcarriers averaged more than three yards before even making contact with the defenders. Scheming up a defense is one thing, but if the players in place can't execute or get to the football, then it doesn't matter much.

"The defense had issues against the Eagles, which we expected. But the offense needs to get it cranked up as well. This could be a long season for first-year coach Arthur Smith." -- CBS Sports' Pete Prisco

NFC South rival rankings

  • Buccaneers: No. 1 (-)

  • Saints: No. 6 (+13)

  • Panthers: No. 23 (+5)

Week 2 opponent ranking

  • Buccaneers: No. 1

Read CBS Sports' full rankings here.

ESPN | Falcons: No. 27 (-4)

(AP Photo/John Bazemore)

Week 1 wasn't a good outing for any member of the 2021 Falcons draft class. Penalties by rookies stalled offensive drives and forced the team to settle for field goals. Not to mention, Jalen Mayfield made it abundantly clear he is not ready to be the full-time protector of Matt Ryan.

"Let's be clear, this selection is by default. Multiple Day 3 picks were inactive in Sunday's loss to the Eagles. Other picks -- Richie Grant and Avery Williams -- largely played on special teams. Offensive linemen Drew Dalman and Jalen Mayfield did not have good days -- three false starts between them at left guard. So that leaves Pitts, the No. 4 overall pick, who had four catches for 31 yards on eight targets. It goes to him, but not because of a standout performance. More because he had any performance at all." -- ESPN's Michael Rothstein

NFC South rival rankings

  • Buccaneers: No. 1(-)

  • Saints: No. 9 (+10)

  • Panthers: No. 23 (+2)

Week 2 opponent ranking

  • Buccaneers: No. 1

Read ESPN's full rankings here.

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