The Atlanta Falcons' perfect season-to-be ended on Sunday, after the team fell on the road to the New Orleans Saints, by the score of 31-27. The Falcons had several opportunities to win the game, but were unable to take advantage of plays just outside the end zone.
Dave Choate of SB Nation's Falcons blog, The Falcoholic, understands the Falcons didn't deserve to win that game after failing to take advantage of a poor defense, writing:
Unfortunately, the Saints blew the lid off the way the Falcons have survived all season long: By winning close games. It's not sustainable forever for the Falcons to pull off games within six points, especially against a quality team (yes, that pains me to say) like the Saints. If you can't take advantage of the worst defense in the league and come up with enough stops to hold Drew Brees and his team under 30, you're going to lose football games. The Falcons couldn't get it done.
Sunday's defeat gave Atlanta their first loss on the season, and it comes against a divisional rival. While that shouldn't ultimately seriously affect the standings, losing to a divisional rival always leaves a bad taste in the mouth of the players and fans.
The 8-1 Falcons will head home to Atlanta and prepare for their Sunday game against the visiting Arizona Cardinals, who enter the game coming off of a bye week and will look to improve on their 4-5 record.