Why do the Atlanta Falcons get no respect?
The Atlanta Falcons, even after dismantling a major rival on NFL Network to go to 11-1 on the season, still can’t get any respect. Why do the Atlanta Falcons get no respect? Well, you might be surprised that it has a lot to do with psychology. The theory known as social attention holding potential explains why the Atlanta Falcons get no respect. The definition of the term from evoyage.com “Refers to the quality and quantity of attention others pay to a particular person. This is strictly a human behavior. When group members bestow a lot of attention on an individual, that individual rises in status. Ignored individuals are banished to low status.” and I know I’ve probably lost a few of you.
So in football terms, it’s the difference between Dallas Cowboys Tony Romo and New England Patriots Tom Brady. People in sports are looked upon in high esteem or low esteem by the achievements and status they accumulate. Tom Brady has 3 Super Bowl rings and Tony Romo has none. It is that fact, that if you took a poll about which quarterback is better, Tony Romo would place last on every poll and probably even in Dallas. The more achievements a player has, the more status they have and as a result, the more attention they receive.
The Falcons unless you’re a fan, are viewed by every other football fan and analyst as a team that’s not good enough to win the Super Bowl. It’s not because they can’t win the Super Bowl, but because the past achievements of the Atlanta Falcons have made them suspect. The Falcons have gone through back to back Playoff embarrassments, with the 2011 loss to the New York Giants 2-24 as the worst of the worst. That lack of achievement drives the thinking of almost every NFL fan and analyst who is not a Falcon fan. However there is hope on the horizon and it all comes down to this season.
If the Falcons can win the NFC Championship and the Super Bowl, that thinking will disappear. Matt Ryan will be considered in the same breath as Tom Brady, Peyton Manning and the other Elite quarterbacks, with the Falcons being in contention as one of the best Franchises of the decade, but if the Falcons lose. The Falcons will be known as a team that couldn’t win the big one. It’s a tough pill to swallow and the only advantage is this Falcons team doesn’t have pressure to win the Super Bowl, because no one expects them to. I believe the Falcons can win the Super Bowl because of how well they’ve been playing to reach 11-1, but the only thing the Falcons can do to get respect is to win the Super Bowl.
James Cobern is a Featured Journalist for TPF and can be contacted at JCobern@ThePenaltyFlagBlog.com.