When the Steelers take on the Atlanta Falcons on Sunday at Heinz Field it will be a matchup of two explosive offenses that are looking to get back on track and start stacking some wins.
Falcons Coach Dan Quinn knows the weapons the Steelers bring to the table, starting with but not limited to Antonio Brown.
“Right off the bat it’s the explosiveness their team has,” said Quinn. “As good and explosive as Antonio is, they have a full complement of guys they use at receiver and tight ends and backs. They make it very challenging because of the different guys they go to and the matchups. They have a full arsenal and full stable of guys they like to feature and use.”
The Falcons also weighed in on JuJu Smith-Schuster, T.J Watt and more.
Running back Devonta Freeman on Antonio Brown:
“AB is explosive. You already know AB is explosive. I have nothing but respect for AB. I know his work ethic. I know him personally. I know where he comes from. I know he is a competitor. I know he likes to play. I know he likes to win. I know he likes to perform at a high level.”
Quinn on what makes JuJu Smith-Schuster a difficult matchup:
“He really finishes. With the ball in his hands, the finishing elements, the physicality. You can see in his background there is defense for sure. He’ll go and finish out. The speed is there, but there is speed with a number of the receivers in their offense. The speed in which they play. But the way JuJu finishes, the physicality, those are things that at the end of the catch, the end of the run, that he certainly caught my attention from a competitor. You better bring it because he certainly is.”
Quarterback Matt Ryan on what he sees from the Steelers defense:
“They’re some talented players at all levels of the defense. Cam (Heyward) in the front-seven – disruptive player, very physical, they’ve got some good outside linebackers in their base schemes come defensive ends and they’re sub-defense. Talented rushers, physical guys, very athletic. So they’ve got some good players on the backend. They’ve been dealing with some injuries across the board on defense but they’ve got some tough schemes to go against as players.”
Quinn on Brown not being on track yet and if it concerns him that he will get on track this week:
“By not being on track…I guess it’s the speed, the explosiveness he has. For a long time I have been impressed by his ability to stop, start, he has a stiff arm, he can make you miss. He has double moves. Not on track…he is an excellent player. We certainly know what Antonio stands for as a competitor and as a group what the offense can do. For sure he has our attention.”
Defensive coordinator Marquand Manuel on Ben Roethlisberger:
“Ben cost me my first Super Bowl. It was just his second year. You still him slinging it. And he is Ben. He is battled tested. We know Ben has been there. No play is over. I am telling the guys that, not just as a coach, from experience. He is a big guy. When you get to him, you have to understand he is able to maneuver in the pocket and keep going.”
Ryan on T.J. Watt and Bud Dupree:
“He’s not little (Watt). He’s a good player. Physical. He’s athletic. You see him in coverage, he does a nice job in coverage being able to run but is also a high effort guy. Does a good job in pass rush and against the run. Bud Dupree is a big, physical player as well. Both those guys are very athletic in what they ask them to do and do a nice job in their scheme.”
Manuel on Vance McDonald:
“He has done a good job, even when he was in San Francisco when he came over. He has done a good job. Good route runner. Good in the run game. You have to make sure you get him on the ground.”