Yea I agree with Blank on this one.
The Atlanta Falcons were soft this season. Some of that can be attributed to injury, but a bulk of that can also be attributed to a team that reads a lot of their press clippings and simply didn’t grind teams up.
Arthur Blank was aware of that, and that’s why the Falcons owner fired both line coaches. Blank told ESPN.com that he needs his team “to be tougher.”
“I think the nature of the game is that it’s a physically violent game,” Blank said, via Vaughn McClure of ESPN.com “It is a tough game. To play football on the professional level and the college level or even the high school level, you’ve got to be a tough kid. You’ve got to be a tough person, I think. And I think a lot of our players are certainly that.
“I think, at the end of the day, if I asked you, . . . give me a brief definition of what toughness is, I think you might say something else, but you might say to me it’s how you control the line of scrimmage. Can you run the ball? Can you stop the run? . . .
“And I don’t think we did either one of those things very well this year. So I would say, if you looked at toughness from that perspective, I don’t think we were as tough as we needed to be.”
Blank was careful to make it clear that he wouldn’t sacrifice character and good people for the sake of wins.
“It doesn’t mean we want players that are going to end up in different sections of the newspaper other than the sports section,” Blank said. “But I do think we want players that have the capacity to be tough; as tough as they need to be, to play right up to the line, to the edge of the line, and to have coaches that can coach them that way as well.”