Two-minute drill: Q&A with Brian Finneran

Two-minute drill

Subject: Falcons special-teamer Brian Finneran

Topic: Effectiveness of the Falcons' special teams

Background: He played at Villanova and bounced around the NFL and NFL Europa with stops in Seattle, Philadelphia and Barcelona before catching on with the Falcons. His career appeared to be over after missing two seasons with a gruesome knee injury, but he battled back and has found ways to contribute. At 6-foot-5, he's a big target on third downs and in the red zone, but he also plays upback on the kickoff return team. He plays on other special-teams units as well. The veteran wide receiver is in his 10th year in the NFL.

Q: How well have the special teams played?

A: We have some momentum going into the playoffs. Eric Weems has been playing great. He has a kickoff return for a touchdown and punt return for a touchdown. He's making plays on kickoff coverage. We have a lot of guys stepping up, like Kroy Biermann and Stephen Nicholas. Mike Peterson was out there for a long time on the punt team. Coy Wire, guys that play a lot of defense and offense, but are still pitching in to help win football games. It's a very selfless deal on special teams, and these guys are doing a good job.

Q: What's your role as the upback on the kickoff return?

A: It's been good. It's a little hairy at times. Coach [Keith] Armstrong trusts me back there if there is a short and high kick  I can take it and get what I can. That was big for them to put me back there. It's part of the game, and I like being on the football field.

Q: Can you talk about the blocking part of it. Aren't you responsible for the first responder?

A: The first responder, hopefully it's not a 50 number or a 90 number. Most of the time the guys up front take care of them, and I can get up the field and make a block on a safety or one of the contain guys. Then I have to continue up the field. But if somebody shows up, you have to block them.

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