Instant Reaction: Falcons End Losing Streak With 27-17 Win Over Buccaneers

In a battle between two teams in the NFC South basement, the Atlanta Falcons got back on track with a win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Turning Point: 

After the Falcons retook the lead at 24-17, Atlanta's held strong on the next drive and forced a three-and-out. Matt Bryant's field goal on the next Falcons possession effectively put this game out of reach.

Falcons MVP:

We can't pick just one, so we're giving it to both Roddy White and Julio Jones. It's obvious what a difference it makes when both of Atlanta's star WRs are at full strength, and today, they combined for 191 of Atlanta's 212 passing yards. White's 4th-quarter TD proved to be decisive.

Stat of the Day: 

Four players had more than four carries for the Bucs...but none broke the 40-yard mark on the day. With no rhythm or consistency in the backfield, it was almost impossible for Tampa to build momentum on offense.

On The Hot Seat: 

The 3-6 Falcons needed this win to save Mike Smith's coaching job, and they granted him a temporary stay of execution today. Lovie Smith, though, is in real trouble. He'll need to turn this ship around in a hurry if he wants to feel confident about being back next fall.

What's Next?

The Falcons turn their attention to a tough road game at Carolina that could have massive implications in the race for the NFC South. Tampa will head to Washington next Sunday for a very winnable game against the Redskins.

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