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Roddy White: Atlanta Falcons are not afraid anymore

The Atlanta Falcons most likely will get the No. 1 seed in the NFC. Yet no 12-2 team in recent memory has conjured up as many critics and non-believers.

Roddy White told Mike Garafolo of USA Today Sports on Sunday that, contrary to what others might believe, the Falcons are confident and ready to take on all comers in the playoffs.

In the next breath he admitted the Falcons didn't always carry that bravado.

"Absolutely. I could say, two, three years ago, that was the attitude, trying to escape guys and not do this and say, 'I hope we don't get these guys,'" White said. "We'd be saying, 'Oh, these guys can do this, they're a good football team.' We can't say we don't want to play them. We can't say that. This year, it's a totally different team."

Sunday's dominant shutout against the defending Super Bowl champion New York Giants should quiet some of the doubters, but it won't convince them all.

The Falcons know only wins in the playoffs -- where they have been made to look like pigeons -- will dispel the doubt. Luckily, all NFC comers will have to go through Atlanta, where Matt Ryan is 33-4.

"When you come to the Georgia Dome, this is our house and we ain't taking no prisoners in our house," said cornerback Asante Samuel. "That's how we feel and that's how we're going to take the field, like champs. This is our house and you can't do nothing in our house."

If Samuel's words prove true, they'll have a chance to play for the Lombardi Trophy in Drew Brees' house.

Follow Kevin Patra on Twitter @kpatra.

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