Falcons head coach Dan Quinn addresses Atlanta's 0-2 exhibition season start following 28-14 loss to Kansas City Chiefs at Mercedes Benz-Stadium (Video by D. Orlando Ledbetter)

What Dan Quinn had to say after the 28-14 loss to the Chiefs 

Here’s what Falcons coach Dan Quinn had to say after the 28-14 loss to the Chiefs on Friday: 

Opening statement: “Good evening everyone. A couple of things I’d like to hit you up on tonight’s game. Primarily, what a tale of two halves. At the end of the first half in the plus, the offense did a nice job of taking care of the ball. Defensively, (Damontae) Kazee with the good pick... We really challenged them offensively, could we come back after last week after we struggled in the opener with penalties that set us back, to come back out and not have those fouls and execute…I was pleased to see that through the first quarter of the game. Calvin (Ridley) had a nice return. It was good to have him involved. For us to see Tevin (Coleman) get loose on a couple of runs, that was good to see. Then (Austin) Hooper also on the (first) drive, I thought made some significant plays. I thought it showed a little bit of the versatility of the group. Defensively, probably the highlight of the first half was Kazee. At the end of the half, the deep play that kind of let some of the air out. We didn’t match the energy that we needed to from the first half into the second half. Penalties, much improved offensively through the first quarter and a half. Defensively, I thought the name of the game in the second half is the ball and they were able to get two (turnovers). So, with that I’m glad to open it up for questions and I was much more encouraged to see out style come through. Our run game and our play-action pass, that’s when we are at our best when those two things marry up. You’ve heard me say that before and it was good to see that part of our game take some action today. Glad to open it up.”

On Ridley’s 36-yard catch play and ability to add the big play to the offense: “We were bummed that we didn’t get a chance to (make big plays) last week. You guys have seen that some at practice and at camp. Having that speed and his ability to make plays down the field was a big factor in why (general manager) Thomas (Dimitroff) and I felt so highly about him. His role on this team is using his (4.43) speed in that way.”

On his kickoff returns: “It’s not something that he has lots of experience at. It’s something that we are all learning to a certain degree. There are some new rules that are taking place on kickoff returns. Sometimes, in the past, you could use the wedge and you don’t have that in the same way. There are way more single blocks than there used to be. You probably saw some today, where a guy missed a block and all of sudden there is a player right near the returner. Those are things this year that if people win on their single blocks there are going to be some big returns in the NFL this year. Not just from our team, but from other teams as well. I think thats kind of the story behind it. It may increase the number of returns and may even add more excitement to the game.”

On if Ridley look natural returning kicks: “He did. Like most of the players when you ask them, ‘have you returned? Yeah, sure. Yeah.’ You go back and look at the stats. (No returns at Alabama). But it was in practice….He’s been putting work in there….Also, assisting Keith (Armstrong) this year is Leon Washington. He’s an intern with us. He’s done an excellent job with us as well. He was a fantastic return man. I think he had ( eight touchdowns) throughout his career. To have another guy’s guidance in that spot is good. As we are going through it, I think the kickoff return and kickoff is a good topic and one that we are going to continue to keep watching. Last week, was like the first examples of the first kickoff returns under the new guidelines. Now, we have another week. I’m anxious to see around the league what changes are taking place.”

On the Ridley’s touchdown catch: “That’s part of his game, knowing he can get into ones that won’t show up on the stat sheet. There was a run were he really got into it. He’s a pretty relentless and fearless guy. Although, he’s small, he was willing to go after it and show that hey, I can do the things you need me to do on all downs. As a competitor he was disappointed in last week’s game. Which, at the time, Thomas and I were smiling about because he wanted to do more and can do more. It was good to see his talent come out tonight.” 

On finding the seam on his TD catch:“Knowing were the leverage is around (him) and how to move into space. He’s got from his background and the coaching that he had in college, he comes into our team pretty equipped from a learning standpoint, from the football side of things where he was playing in an offense that was as close to a pro-style offense as other guys coming in from a different set of circumstances. We’ve been encouraged for him. He’s somebody that you don’t generally correct a whole lot of times. If there’s a mistake to be made he’s ready to fix it right away.”

On play-calling, more play-action, bootlegs: “I definitely want to make sure that’s part of our priorities. When the run game and the play-action go hand-in-hand it’s such a challenge for the defense. So we really want to make sure that we stay connected to that. When the play-action pass game is going good that meant the run game at some point was going good. The linebackers or safeties were having to step up. If they were feeling like you hit them on a couple of play-(action) passes, they play a little softer underneath. So if the runs can get going that’s part of that balance that you like to have. You’ll see more of that for sure.” 

On Coleman running behind right guard Brandon Fusco: “I thought that last week heading into the game he looked comfortable in the spots of doing what he did in pass protection. That was one of the things where he has a real strength. Today, to see him keep taking the steps to improve I was encouraged by that.”

On Sarkisian being on the sideline: “The reason why is because with Greg Knapp in the press box. So we are going to go back and forth (to see) which is the best way for him. Greg brings a lot of experience to us. Both as a quarterback coach and as a play caller. His eyes up in the press box are really valuable, too. As it stands today, I’m comfortable with how it looks. We said that after this game is when we’d make an evaluation for him to go up on not. I’ll have more about it that this week. So far, I’m comfortable with that.”

(Sarkisian has been downstairs for both exhibition games this season.)

More on Sarkisian being downstairs: “Right now, I’m comfortable with where he’s seeing it and getting the calls in quickly.”

On why he wants to be on the field (Most NFL coordinators are upstairs): “He has more experience (in college) that way. All of his time in college, he’s done it from where he was on the field. If that works better for us then I’m all for it.” 

On what Greg Knapp would do from upstairs:  “He would tell them what he sees. He would give instant feedback on the way somebody is playing something. That's kind of the information that can go right to the play-caller fast. The safety is playing this. The linebacker is playing this. They're kind of given the information that sometimes is in the first 15 plays or so, that's what you're looking for, to gain some information on how a team is trying to defend you. Greg is very quick to see that and will be able to call that out quickly. (That) allows the play-caller to say, if they're going to do this that way, we can match it with another way. Those two in sync definitely helps.”

On the play of Foye Oluokun who started for Deion Jones:  “He's really responded. We were hopeful, and I can't wait to see it. We wanted to get some matchups where he could play man-to-man on the tight end. They certainly have a good one in (Travis) Kelce. Those were the ones we were looking at, as well. Some of the calls in the (exhibition) season we made based on matchups as much as the down and distance. I wasn't pleased with our third down execution defensively, but some of that was designed to say, ‘Okay, we may not call this in the regular season at this time, but it's worth finding this matchup on a player like that.’ For us from an evaluation standpoint, you can imagine how valuable that would be. Alright, man, you did a good job, this guy is one of the best there is, we want to match you up on him and see what you can do. That shows a lot of confidence we have in him. He'll certainly have a big role on teams as well. He's a good tackler. He has length, he can guard tight ends. The more guys we have to do that, especially in our division, the better.”

On Matt Ryan’s play this offseason: “It was. He thinks like I do: where we want to attack. Yeah, that's what we saw tonight, utilizing different guys. The escape for him on third down to maneuver in the pocket, rip the ball to Austin Hooper. That was classic Matt in terms of staying with it, it's not there yet, move around, buy time, then rip one. That was good to see.”

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