Arthur Smith has accepted the Atlanta Falcons’ head coach position, and that’s all well and dandy. But what can we expect from Smith?
Well, if his time as offensive coordinator with the Tennessee Titans is any indication, you can bet he hopes to have a Derrick Henry-like running back. Unfortunately for Smith, Henry remains with the Titans.
As of today, Smith’s ground game in Atlanta consists of Todd Gurley, Brian Hill and Ito Smith. Not terrible, but not Henry.
Meanwhile, the quarterback remains Matt Ryan, who will turn 36-years-old before next season. But Ryan was still productive, despite the Falcons’ 4-12 record. Of course, that doesn’t tell the full story, as the Falcons lost seven of those games by a touchdown or less. That’s right, seven.
So maybe Smith will be the man to get them over the hump.
He has served as offensive coordinator for the Titans in each of the last two seasons. The Titans thrived with Smith, averaging 30.7 points per game.
Last season, the Titans put up 396.4 yards per game, third in the NFL. They won the AFC South before losing to the Baltimore Ravens in the first round of the playoffs. They advanced all the way to the AFC championship in 2019.
Smith takes over for Dan Quinn, who was fired Oct. 11 with former general manager Thomas Dimitroff after the Falcons’ 0-5 start.
The Falcons own the No. 4 overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft.
Matt Loede contributed to this post.