GAMEDAY NOTES: Atlanta Falcons

GAMEDAY NOTES: Atlanta Falcons

The Falcons and Titans got a small taste of one another in a joint practice earlier in training camp

The Tennessee Titans and Atlanta Falcons will meet for the second time this preseason when the two teams face each other in their third preseason game Saturday night in Atlanta's Georgia Dome.

The two teams met earlier in training at the Falcons training facility in Flowery Branch for a joint practice.

ATLANTA FALCONS

The Falcons (1-1) won their preseason opener at home with a 16-10 win over the Miami Dolphins. Last week they were crushed on the road by the Houston Texans 32-7. This will be there final preseason home game Saturday against the Titans.

FALCONS FACTS

The Falcons and Titans are tied in preseason contests 4-4.

Falcons wide receivers coach Terry Robiske is the father of Titans receiver Brian Robiske.

Falcons wide receiver Courtney Roby played for the Titans from 2005-06.

Falcons first round selection, tackle Jake Matthews is the son of Titans Hall of Fame tackle Bruce Matthews.

Falcons center James Stone played his collegiate football at the University of Tennessee and is from Maplewood High School here in Nashville.

Falcons head coach Mike Smith is 60-36 overall in seven seasons.

Smith is 1-4 overall in post season.

Smith is 1-0 all-time against the Titans.

Smith is 1-0 at home against the Titans.

Smith is 2-1 all-time against Ken Whisenhunt including 0-1 in playoffs.

FALCONS TO WATCH

QB Matt Ryan: Ryan will be looking for a bounce back for his team after being crushed by Houston. This will be their starters longest game of the preseason and Ryan & company will want to make a statement for themselves as the look to bounce back following a terrible 2013 season.

OT Jake Matthews: Matthews, who started training camp as the right tackle has moved to left tackle this week following the injury to Sam Baker. Matthews has the skills to play the left side, but this will be his first time starting there in an NFL game and I expect the Titans to look his way with their starting defense who are hungry for a better start defensively. How Matthews holds up early could be a huge indicator of how the Falcons offense might be this season.

WR Julio Jones: Jones was well on his way to becoming one of the top players in the league at his position before a season ending injury cut short his 2013 campaign. Jones needs this time to work with Roddy White and Matt Ryan to work on timing if the Falcons offense can return to being as explosive as they were two seasons ago. There is a possibility that Jones might not play in this game.

RB Devonta Freeman: The rookie running back out of Florida State is a talented back that many people had in conversations with the Titans before the draft. Through two preseason games, Freeman leads the team in both attempts and yards rushing with 16 carries for 81 yards.

TENNESSEE TITANS

The Titans are 1-1 in the preseason, and coming off a 31-24 loss at New Orleans.

The Titans are 5-1 all-time at home against the Falcons.

The Titans are 2-5 all-time on the road against the Falcons.

The last time these two teams met in the Georgia Dome, the Falcons defeated the Titans 23-17 on 11/20/11.

The last time these two teams played at L.P. Field, the Titans defeated the Falcons 20-13 on 10/7/07.

The two teams played for the first time in 1972. The Falcons defeated the then Houston Oilers 20-10.

Ken Whisenhunt is 2-2 all-time versus the Falcons including 1-0 in the playoffs.

Titans offensive guard Chance Warmack is from Atlanta and played at Westlake High School prior to attending college at the University of Alabama.

Ken Whisenhunt is a native of Augusta. Ga. He attended Georgia Tech University in Atlanta before being drafted by the Falcons in the 12th round of the 1985 NFL Draft. Whisenhunt played four seasons with the Falcons (1985-88) and in 30 games with the team, he totaled 56 receptions for 551 yards and five touchdowns.

Titans rookie quarterback Zach Mettenberger is from Watkinsville, Ga.

Likewise, Titans quarterback Charlie Whitehurst is from Deluth, Ga.

Titans linebacker Wesley Woodyard was the Georgia AAA Defensive Player of the Year for LaGrange, (Ga.) High School before attending the University of Kentucky.

TITANS PLAYERS TO WATCH

QB Jake Locker: Obviously Locker is one to watch as this will be the game where the starters are likely to play the most in the preseason, and what Locker is able to do playing against the Falcons best will be important. Locker and the first team offense need to be productive and produce points against a Falcons defense that gave up 32 points last week to a questionable Texans offense.

WR Justin Hunter: Hunter needs to show consistency and build on his big game last week. He is a physical mismatch with most cornerbacks and faster that most safeties. As has been stated repeatedly throughout this camp, Hunter is a must have if this offense is to reach its potential.

CB Coty Sensabaugh and Blidi Wrey-Wilson: These two will likely be the preferred targets for the Falcons quarterbacks to work on, and it will be a much needed test for both players as they continue to compete for the starting spot opposite Jason McCourty.

OLB Derrick Morgan and Kamerion Wimbley: The Titans pass rush has been spotty in actually getting to the quarterback and completing the play with sacks. Morgan and Wimbley will be watched to see if they can finish against Atlanta. Their ability when they have even a small gameplan in place will be an indication of what the regular season might hold.

TELEVISION

WKRN- News 2 ABC

Play-by-play: Cory Curtis

Analyst: Kerry Collins

Sideline reporter: Audra Martin

RADIO

Titans Radio Network Stations

WGFX 104.5 The Zone Nashville

Sirius Channel 132

Play-by-Play: Mike Keith

Analyst: Frank Wycheck

Gameday Host: Rhett Bryan

Sideline reporter: Jonathan Hutton

OFFICIALS

Referee: Jerome Boger

Umpire: Tony Michalek

Head Linesman: Tom Stabile

Line Judge: Ed Walker

Field Judge: Terry Brown

Side Judge: Allen Baynes

Back Judge: Toney Sheratore

Replay Offcial: Carl Madsen

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