Matthews on lessons learned from 7-9 season

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Falcons offensive lineman Jake Matthews looks back on Falcons season. (Video by D. Orlando Ledbetter/AJC)

On locker room clean-out day, Falcons left tackle Jake Matthews discussed the lessons the team must learn from missing the playoffs and going 7-9 on Monday (He was interviewed before the news of the fired coordinators.):

On getting the run game going down the stretch: "Especially this last game in a game that a lot of people think it doesn't matter. But being down 17 (to) nothing on the road and in that environment. Coming back and winning, we're very happy. We are happy about that. Obviously, not happy overall with the way the season went, but we've got to learn from it and get better. Turn it into a positive thing."

On the reality that that then didn't make the playoffs: "Yeah, no question, that's what we are going for every year. Making the playoffs and we didn't meet that standard this year. You've got to learn from this and take the good things out of it. Find a way to get there next year. Obviously, it isn't good enough to not make the playoffs for us. We have a standard that's really high. We expect a lot of from ourselves. We have to learn from it and get better."

On looking back on the season: "It just felt like overall we didn't finish when we had opportunities to. It wasn't like we were getting destroyed every game. We just didn't capitalize a lot of times. But I think toward the end of the year we did a better job. We have to learn from it. That's the biggest point that I can make from all of this."

On rebounding next season: "I think just finding a way to be consistent. There were times when we felt like no one could stop us. Then times where we were stopping ourselves. That's the biggest thing that we can work on is preventing those self-inflicted wounds and beating ourselves. We've got plenty of talent around here. We expect a lot from ourselves. We have to find a way to be more consistent and play at a higher level."


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