SAN FRANCISCO - Two teams separated by just a few plays and all of four points for a berth to the Super Bowl last February now find themselves on opposite ends of the spectrum and standings.
ATLANTA - When he first looked at Atlanta's 2013 schedule, Tony Gonzalez was thrilled to see a late December rematch with the San Francisco 49ers.
FLOWERY BRANCH - The ugliest low points of a miserable season for Matt Ryan and the Falcons have come on the road.
FLOWERY BRANCH - Roddy White is beginning to perform like an elite receiver again - just in time for a final visit to one of his favorite stadiums.
FLOWERY BRANCH - Falcons coach Mike Smith hopes his defense is finally starting to understand how to create takeaways.
ATLANTA - From Washington's first possession to the decisive play in the final minute, Atlanta's defense kept finding ways to get its hands on the ball.
ATLANTA - The Redskins, awash in chaos and controversy, may find comfort in the reminder they're not alone in their first-to-worst misery.
FLOWERY BRANCH - Mike Nolan knows his second season as Falcons defensive coordinator has been a borderline disaster.
FLOWERY BRANCH - The Falcons are giving rookies bigger roles, especially on defense, down the stretch of a lost season.
FLOWERY BRANCH - Falcons offensive coordinator Dirk Koetter isn't saying much about his recent interview with Boise State.
FLOWERY BRANCH - Roddy White says the Falcons' 10th loss was especially painful.
GREEN BAY, Wis. - Falcons linebacker Sean Weatherspoon took a knee to catch his breath after his lumbering 71-yard interception return for a touchdown.
FLOWERY BRANCH - The Atlanta Falcons don't know if they'll be facing Green Bay quarterback Aaron Rodgers on Sunday.
FLOWERY BRANCH - Steven Jackson says running the ball in the NFL requires patience and commitment.
LONDON - London is getting its first NFL day game, creating a new morning time slot for viewers in the United States.
It looked like 2013 all over again for the Atlanta Falcons' offense last week.
CINCINNATI - Picked apart and run over. The Falcons defense had a horrid day in just about every way.
CINCINNATI - Aaron Rodgers. Tom Brady. Matthew Stafford. Andrew Luck. Philip Rivers. Joe Flacco. Ben Roethlisberger.
One week ago, Gabe Carimi was being groomed to be the Falcons' version of John Havlicek who could play backup roles across the offensive line.
FLOWERY BRANCH - Steven Jackson has been the feature running back for most of his 11-year NFL career.
Before the Atlanta Falcons decided to sign Devin Hester, they wanted to make sure he wasn't content just returning kickoffs and punts.
ATLANTA - Matt Ryan has turned in plenty of impressive performances for the Atlanta Falcons.
ATLANTA - Say this about a rivalry: It's not much of one if both teams aren't winning on a regular basis.
Falcons receiver Julio Jones has waited 11 months to return from a broken right foot and regain his Pro Bowl form.
FLOWERY BRANCH - For Matt Ryan, there are none of those annoying questions about his playoff record.
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