Team Spirit Extras

Team Spirit author Mark Stewart talks about the OVERTIME web page.


Mark picks his favorite Falcons.



Cover Team SpiritWhat's new with the Atlanta Falcons? That's what this page is all about.

The Team Spirit OVERTIME website begins where the Team Spirit books end.

That's because football never stands still … And I can never squeeze everything I want into 48 pages!

Scroll down for team updates, player profiles, and stats you won't find in the book. Click on the videos to the left to hear me talk about Team Spirit OVERTIME as well as my favorite players. And take a look below at some of the Falcons collectibles I have in my home—pretty cool, right?

Enjoy this site, check back whenever you like, and click here to EMAIL me with any questions or comments about the Falcons.



20132017 Season Roundup: It took the defending NFC champions until Thanksgiving to find their rhythm—just in time to snag the final spot in the playoffs. They beat the Rams in the Wild Card game but lost to the Saints to end their season. QB Matt Ryan had another solid season, receiver Julio Jones made the Pro Bowl, and running backs Devonta Freeman and Tevin Coleman combined for 16 touchdowns.

November 12, 2017: Adrian Clayborn set a team record with six sacks against the Cowboys. He forced two fumbles and recovered one. Quarterback Matt Ryan reached 40,000 passing yards in the same game.

2017 Season Preview: Atlanta fans still cannot believe their Falcons lost the Super Bowl. To return to the big game, the team will need to give QB Matt Ryan more playmakers than just Julio Jones. Devonta Freeman and Tevin Coleman may provide those weapons, especially when they are on the field at the same on passing downs. The Atlanta D improved tremendously during 2016 and should be solid for 2017.

20132016 Season Roundup: The Falcons won 11 games behind the passing of NFL MVP Matt Ryan and receiving of Julio Jones. The team’s defense, led by pass rusher Vic Beasley, stepped up during the playoffs as Atlanta defeated the Seahawks and Packers to reach the Super Bowl for the first time in 18 seasons.  The Falcons built a 28–3 lead over the Patriots, but could not hold on. New England tied the score and won the game 34–28 in overtime.

2016 Season Preview: Atlanta fans can look forward to a happier 2016 after a dreadful finish in 2015 bumped the Falcons out of the payoffs. While Roddy White is gone, the offense still has superstars Matt Ryan, Julio Jones and Devonta Freeman—plus a solid offensive line—to put points on the board. The defense is still shaky, however. The Falcons hope things get sorted out sooner rather than later.

2013January 3, 2016: Julio Jones caught 9 passes for 149 against the Saints to finish tied for the NFL lead with 136 receptions. He led the league with 1,871 yards.

September 27, 2015: Julio Jones set a record for the first three games of a season with 34 catches.

2015 Season Preview: Matt Ryan is the man who powers the Atlanta offense. He’s one of the best QBs in the NFL. If he and Julio Jones get a little help in 2015, the Falcons will be tough to beat. They have one of the softest schedules in the league.

2013September 18, 2014: Devin Hester scored on a punt return against the Buccaneers to set a new NFL record with his 20th punt/kickoff return for a touchdown. He broke the record of 19 that he shared with Hall of Famer Deion Sanders.

September 1, 2014: With all-time great Tony Gonzalez retired, quarterback Ryan will be throwing to Julio Jones more often. A rebuilt line should give him the extra time he needs. Will the defense improve over a disappointing 2013 season? That will depend on one or two pass-rushers stepping up and raising their games.

2013December 154, 2013: Tony Gonzalez became the first tight end ever to reach 15,000 career receiving yards. The four other players with 15,000 yards were all wide receivers.

September 4, 2013: Will this be the year Matty Ice takes the Falcons all the way to the Super Bowl? They came close last season. The offense has the power to roll over any opponent, with receivers Julio Jones, Roddy White, and Tony Gonzalez. Now they have added veteran runner Steven Jackson. Much will depend on the defense to make key stops in high-scoring games.

2013February 2, 2013: The Falcons had the best record in the NFC for the second time in three season with a 13–3 mark. They built big leads in the playoffs against the Seahawks and 49ers, but allowed both teams to make comebacks in the 2nd half. Atlanta hung on to beat Seattle 30–28 but lost to San Francisco in the NFC Championship 28–24.

Summer, 2012: The bottom line for the Falcons is that making it to the playoffs is no longer good enough. They must keep winning in the postseason. In 2012, Matt Ryan will have two Grade A targets in Roddy White and second-year star Julio Jones. If Michael Turner can make it through the season without wearing out, Atlanta could be looking at a return trip to the Super Bowl.

Team Spirit Extras

These mini collector books came out in the early 1990s. They were pretty cool. (NFL Pro Set/Collect-A-Book)




Team Spirit Extras

Okay. How does this picture of Keith Brooking make sense? (Topps, Inc.)


George Kunz — Offensive Lineman
Born: 7/5/1947
Played for Team: 1969 to 1974
The Falcons made George Kunz the second player picked in the 1969 draft, after O.J. Simpson. He was an All-Pro twice for the Falcons before finishing his career with the Baltimore Colts.

Bill Fralic — Offensive Lineman
Born: 10/31/1962
Played for Team: 1985 to 1992
Like George Kunz years before, Bill Fralic was taken with the second overall pick in the draft, right after Bruce Smith. Fralic was a starter as a rookie and was named an All-Pro in his second and third seasons in the league. After his NFL career, Fralic became an important voice in the effort to ban steroids and other drugs from football.

Jamal Anderson — Running Back
Born: 9/30/1972
Played for Team: 1994 to 2001
More than any single player, Jamal Anderson was responsible for the Falcons' run to the Super Bowl in 1998. He was a one-man wrecking crew, carrying or catching the ball 437 times and scoring 16 touchdowns. The heavy workload shortened his career but made him a hero forever in the hearts of Atlanta fans.

Ray Buchanan — Defensive Back
Born: 9/29/1971
Played for Team: 1997 to 2003
Ray Buchanan's fine play as a cornerback was a big reason the Falcons were NFC champs in 1998. He was known as "Big Play Ray" for making tackles and interceptions with the game on the line.

Keith Brooking — Linebacker
Born: 10/30/1975
Played for Team: 1998 to 2008
By the end of his rookie season, Keith Brooking was one of the key players on the Falcons. The Minnesota Vikings learned this the heard way, when Brooking had eight tackles in the NFC Championship Game to help Atlanta reach the Super Bowl. He went on to lead the team in tackles each year from 2001 to 2006.

Alge Crumpler — Receiver
Born: 12/23/1977
Played for Team: 2001 to 2007
Alge Crumpler wasn't as tall as other NFL tight ends, but he was a four-time Pro Bowl pick thanks to his toughness and pass-catching kills. Crumpler caught 40 or more passes for Atlanta five years in a row.

Team Spirit Extras

Alge Crumpler gets ready for a play. Will he block or go out for a pass? (Black Book partners)


The Falcons leading runner in their first two seasons was Junior Coffey. In 1966, he ran for 722 yards in 14 games, scored four rushing touchdowns, and caught one touchdown pass. Coffey must have liked those numbers. In 1967, he ran for 722 yards in 14 games, scored four rushing touchdowns, and caught one touchdown pass.

The statistic used to measure a quarterback's performance is a complicated formula called Quarterback Rating. The highest score possible in a game is 158.3. Fewer than 40 players have had a "perfect score" in a game, but a record five of them are Falcons—Bobby Hebert (1993), Steve Bartkowski (1984), Scott Hunter (1976), Bob Lee (1973), and Dick Shiner (1973). One week after Shiner's perfect game, he failed to complete a single pass!

Tight end Alge Crumpler was one of two NFL siblings. His older brother, Carlester Jr., played for the Seattle Seahawks and Minnesota Vikings in the 1990s. Their dad, Carlester Sr., had a brief NFL career in the 1970s. Alge was named after the main character in the children's book, Flowers for Algernon.

Team Spirit Extras

Andre Rison was as good a receiver as there was in the NFL when he played for the Falcons. (McDonald's Corp./Topps, Inc.)


Team Spirit Extras

Scott Case might have been the hardest-tackling player ever to wear an Atlanta uniform. (NFL Pro Set)


No Falcon has led the league in rushing yards.

1981 — Alfred Jenkins — 1,358
2015 — Julio Jones — 1,871

2015 — Julio Jones — 136

No Falcon has led the league in passing yards.

2015 Devonta Freeman — 11

1981 — Alfred Jenkins — 13 (tied for NFL lead)
1993 — Andre Rison — 15 (tied for NFL lead)

1980 — Steve Bartkowski — 31

2016 — Matt Bryant — 158

1988 — Scott Case — 10

2016 — Vic Beasley — 15.5

1998 NFC Championship Minnesota Vikings Won 30–27 (OT)
1998 Super Bowl XXXIII Denver Broncos Lost 34–19
2004 NFC Championship Philadelphia Eagles Lost 27–10
2012 NFC Championship San Francisco 49ers Lost 28–24
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