Falcons owner Arthur Blank: 'I like where we're going'

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Peter King's latest edition of "Football Morning in America" provided offseason rankings of all the team's around the league.

On the surface, it was an innocent-looking piece given it is the offseason and writers at all levels often use this time to look into crystal balls for rankings and roster predictions.

But King dropped a nugget on the Atlanta Falcons when he wrote, "I keep hearing owner Arthur Blank is getting restless."

Two days later, Blank emailed a statement to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution in response to King's column.

"I'm feeling very good about what (general manager) Thomas (Dimitroff) and (coach) Dan (Quinn) have done this offseason," Blank said, via D. Orlando Ledbetter of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. "We have some key guys getting healthy again, the draft picks are getting up to speed, the new coordinators are meshing well and I'm confident we're going to be ready to go for a very competitive training camp. I like where we're going."

As King noted, the Falcons are 18-17 over the past 35 games, which includes the stunning loss in Super Bowl LI to the New England Patriots. King also points to the hefty contract of quarterback Matt Ryan, who signed a five-year, $150 million extension with $100 million guaranteed in May 2018, and a looming deal with wide receiver Julio Jones, whom King estimates will becomes "a $20-million-a-year player."

Nevertheless, Blank's confidence level in Dimitroff and Quinn echoes previous comments made in early December 2018 when the team sat on a 4-8 record. The Falcons would go on to finish the season at 7-9.

But as the Falcons owner alluded to, the team's overall health will play a role in success. The Falcons were decimated by injuries last season to key contributors, including running back Devonta Freeman, linebacker Deion Jones, safety Keanu Neal and free safety Ricardo Allen, among others. Getting those players back on the field will go a long way in helping both sides of the football.

Change also took place during the offseason, as the Falcons brought back offensive coordinator Dirk Koetter to replace Steve Sarkisian, who couldn't get the most out of an offense boasting potent aerial weapons with Ryan, Jones, Calvin Ridley, Mohamed Sanu and Austin Hooper.

While it's not often an NFL team owner will take the time to respond to something written, Blank's statement reflects clear confidence.

And if anything, Blank's stance reflects patience and a belief that the Falcons have the foundation at all levels to get their mojo back after missing the postseason the past season.

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