I know Eagles new head coach Chip Kelly had to be sitting somewhere staring at 49ers young quarterback Colin Kaepernick imagining him on the Eagles roster. I’m sure Kelly would love to have that young man running his uptempo, read option offense for the Eagles in the upcoming year. Unfortunately, the young man isn’t likely to be leaving the San Francisco organization for a long time.
It’s all about the quarterback in the NFL. If your quarterback plays well, usually your entire team plays well and you win football games.
In the NFC title battle, Matt Ryan passed the Falcons out to a 17-0 lead by getting the ball to his three outstanding wide receivers Julio Jones, Roddy White and future Hall of Famer, tight end Tony Gonzalez. Ryan made some great reads in the first half, followed by some quick,exact decisions and precise on the money throws.
He completed the first half scoring with a touchdown throw to Gonzalez that was outstanding. Ryan and the Falcons dominated the first half and walked off the field with a 24-14 lead. They weren’t able to score any more points in the game and that cost them a trip to the Super Bowl.
Amazingly, the inexperienced Kaepernick was not phased by playing from behind in the NFC Championship game. The youngster had no problem keeping his poise with crowd noise off the charts and the Atlanta defense stacked up to stop him from running.
He operated like a seasoned playoff-tested quarterback because he stayed disciplined and focused. The young man made adjustments at the line of scrimmage before nearly every play.
First he analyzed what defense and coverage the Falcons were in, then he changed plays and moved his teammates into position before executing the plays to perfection. Kaepernick did this while the Georgia Dome crowd screamed to the top of their lungs and a national television audience sat and watched in amazement.
The Falcons defense came into the game with the intention of stopping Kaepernick from beating them with his legs and they were successful doing that because the young quarterback only ran for 21 yards on two carries. Surprisingly, the former Nevada quarterback beat Atlanta with his leadership, his mind, and his arm.
He handed the ball off to Frank Gore when he ran the read option, rather than keeping the ball and trying to get outside like he did last week against the Packers. The Falcons outside linebackers stayed outside to stop the quarterback from getting outside, but that opened up a lane for Gore and LaMichael James to gash them.
Atlanta’s secondary took wide receiver Michael Crabtree away from him for most of the day, but Kaepernick had no problem with that and simply got the ball to tight end Vernon Davis. The talented Pro Bowl tight end caught five passes for 106 yards and one touchdown.
Ryan made a couple of mistakes in the second half, which resulted in two turnovers which hurt the Falcons. After scoring 24 points in the first half, Atlanta wasn’t able to score a single point in the second half.