5 things every Falcons fan needs to know on Christmas


FLOWERY BRANCH — Here are the five things you need to know on Christmas  about the Falcons (7-7), who play host the undefeated Carolina Panthers (14-0) at 1 p.m. Sunday at the Georgia Dome. Carolina's Pro Bowl running back Jonathan Stewart (foot) was declared out for the game by Carolina coach Ron Rivera on Thursday.

Top 50 Falcons: No. 13, Julio Jones

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1. PRACTICE: Falcons coach Dan Quinn pushed practice back to the afternoon so the players could play Santa Claus and spend time with their kids. Practice will start at 2:15 p.m. today.

2. COLEMAN UPDATE: Quinn will have an update on Tevin Coleman, who slipped in the shower and suffered a concussion on Wednesday. He's in the league's concussion protocol program.

3. UNDERDOGS: The Falcons are seven point underdogs to Panthers. The Falcons have lost 11 straight as home dogs of a touchdown or more. Atlanta went 6-5 against-the-spread in those games, according to PredictionMachine.com. (@predictmachine on Twitter)

4. TOP 50 COUNTDOWN: Check back later today on AJC. com to see who's ranked No. 6. Is it Hammer Time? 

5. FOX NO. 2 TEAM:  FOX Sports' Kevin Burkhardt, John Lynch and Pam Oliver will be the announcers for the game on Sunday.



Aleria has been a member of the Falcons cheer squad for three seasons. (Curtis Compton / www.ajc.com)

Credit: D. Orlando Ledbetter

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Credit: D. Orlando Ledbetter