Report card: Jaguars 17, Falcons 6

Offense derailed by dropped passes; defense gashed

The Falcons’ dress rehearsal didn’t go well.

The first-team offense sputtered about as three receivers dropped passes and the first-team defense was gashed by big plays.

It must be noted that the Falcons did play without two starters on offense -- Julio Jones and Devonta Freeman -- and three starters on defense in free safety Ricardo Allen, left cornerback Desmond Trufant and middle linebacker Deion Jones.

Here are the grades for the Falcons from their 17-6 loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars in the third exhibition game on Saturday at TIAA Bank Stadium. There were 64,208 tickets distributed.

Run offense: The offensive line did not distinguish itself against a stout Jaguars defensive front seven, but the running numbers didn't look back. Running back Tevin Coleman had seven carries for 38 yards, including a 22-yard gain. Ito Smith rushed two times for 8 yards in the first half. The Falcons don't have a short-yardage package or they don't like it very much. They went with five receivers in a third-and-1 situation. Grade: C-minus

Pass offense: Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan completed 5 of 12 passes for 57 yards and finished with a 56.6 passer rating. He was sacked three times. The offense was bogged down by three dropped passes. Tight end Austin Hooper, wide receiver Calvin Ridley and wide receiver Mohamed Sanu all dropped passes that stymied drives. Ridley also dropped a pass from Matt Schaub in the third quarter. Ridley had 20 dropped passes at Alabama and that was one of the reasons he lasted until the 26th pick in the draft. Grade: C 

Run defense: The defense started out strong in the first quarter before Jaguars running back Corey Grant ripped off a 19-yard gain in the second quarter. On the following play, Leonard Fournette scored on a touchdown run from 21-yards out. He made a nice cut to reverse his field. Grade: D 

Pass defense: Cornerback Robert Alford tipped Jacksonville quarterback Blake Bortles' first pass and strong safety Keanu Neal intercepted. Rookie Isaiah Oliver started at left cornerback for Trufant and it didn't take long for Bortles to find him. The QB connected with wide receiver Donte Moncrief for a 37-yard gain early in the second quarter. Two plays later, the Jaguars scored a touchdown and took a 7-3 lead. The Falcons gave up a 31-yard pass on a screen to running back Brandon Wilds in the third quarter. Free safety Damontae Kazee was called for his second lowering of the helmet penalty this exhibition season when he tackled Jacksonville wide receiver Marquise Lee in the first quarter. Kazee went in sideways and did not appear to lead with his helmet. Lee's knee was injured on the play and he was carted off the field. Grade C-minus

Special teams: Kicker Matt Bryant made his exhibition season debut and made field goals of 47 and 33 yards. He looked strong in warm-ups. Punter Matt Bosher had a 52-yard punt that had 5.03 seconds of hang-time. He bottled the Jaguars up at the 2-yard line on another punt that was downed by Justin Bethel. The kickoff returners didn't get any action as the Jaguars kicked the ball out of the end zone in the first half. Ito Smith had a nice 31-yard return in the third quarter. The coverage units were solid. Grade B-minus

Coaching: The #FireSark people were out on the twitter-verse. But ignore them. Offensive coordinator Steve Sarkisian called a good game and players were open. While Sarkisian did call the game from the sideline, he can't go out on the field and catch the ball for Ridley, Sanu and Hooper. The defense's run fits were a little off on some of the Jaguars' read-pass-option plays. That's not a major problem and is correctable. Hate to see the nose guard, who's actually over the ball, jump offsides. That happened to rookie Deadrin Senat. There's a ton of work to be done before the Falcons open the regular season against the Eagles on Thursday, Sept. 6. Grade C-plus 

Next up: With most of the starters not expected to play, the Falcons will host the Miami Dolphins at 7 p.m. Thursday night in the exhibition season finale at Mercedes-Benz Stadium.

Credit: Sam Greenwood

Credit: Sam Greenwood