Falcons playoff chances decreasing after Jets loss pushes them to 1-4

Kevin C. Cox

Not many expected the Falcons to be 1-4 through five weeks of the season, but that's exactly where they sit after Monday night's loss.

The Atlanta Falcons aren't playing along with the script.

They were supposed to be one of the best teams in the NFC after getting all the way to the conference championship game last season. But instead, Atlanta has gotten off to a 1-4 start, the worst start to a season it has had since the 2007 season, when the Falcons finished 4-12. The Falcons' latest loss was a 30-28 heartbreaker on Monday Night Football against the New York Jets.

All hope is not lost for the Falcons, though. Nine teams in the history of the league have made the playoffs after a 1-4 start to the season. The Bengals even made the playoffs after starting 1-6 in 1970. Most recently, the 2008 Chargers fell to 4-8 before storming to the postseason.

That's not a ton of hope, but at least it's been done before. However, that the New Orleans Saints are off to an undefeated, 5-0 start doesn't help Atlanta's chances.

Needless to say, the Falcons have to beat the helpless Buccaneers in Week 6 if they hope to make an improbable run to the playoffs. Falling to 1-5 would mean the Falcons would need an historic run to sneak into the postseason.

Maybe the expectations have been too much for Atlanta to handle. But the Falcons will show what they are really made of in the coming weeks.

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