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WR Nick Williams - Atlanta Falcons

5-10, 184Born: 11-23-1990College: ConnecticutDrafted: ---

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Week 21: vs New England Patriots

All WR vs NE

Mark and Joe say: Neutral matchup. First things first - Julio Jones (toe, foot) said on Wednesday, February 1 that he's ready to go and doesn't expect his foot injuries to limit him in the Super Bowl. Falcons coach Dan Quinn said Julio Jones (toe) 'looked great' in the Monday, January 30 practice. Jones averaged more than 100 receiving yards per game in 2016, and he is he first player in NFL history to average more than 100 receiving yards per game in four different seasons. He was a one-man wrecking crew against the Packers two weekends ago, with 12 targets for 9/180/2 receiving, playing through pain from his foot and toe injuries. How hot is the Atlanta passing offense entering Super Bowl LI? Well, Matt Ryan is the only quarterback in playoff history to throw for at least three touchdowns in four straight playoff games. So far this post-season, Ryan has thrown seven passing scores, with 26/37 for 338 yards passing, three TDs and zero interceptions thrown against the Seahawks two games ago (he took three sacks for -15 yards), and then a jaw-dropping 27/38 for 392 yards passing, four TDs and zero interceptions thrown, with zero sacks taken, during the 44-21 demolition of Green Bay two weekends ago. Beside Jones' outstanding performance, Mohamed Sanu (1/7/0 rushing with seven targets for 5/52/1 receiving) and Devonta Freeman (five for 4/42/1) also scored against the Packers. With 730 yards passing, seven TDs and zero interceptions thrown so far during the playoffs, Ryan and the Falcons enter the Super Bowl flying high in this phase of the game. Two games ago, Brock Osweiler struggled at Gillette Stadium, throwing 23/40 for 198 yards passing, one TD and three interceptions, while taking three sacks for -17 yards. Ben Roethlisberger fared a little better, with 31/47 for 314 yards passing, one TD and one interception thrown (with zero sacks taken), but his team still lost 17-36. During the post-season, New England has averaged 247 net passing yards allowed per game, with two TDs surrendered vs. four interceptions generated - during regular season the Patriots ranked 12th in the NFL averaging 237.9 net passing yards allowed per game, with 21 passing scores handed out vs. 13 interceptions (tied for 15th in the NFL) and 34 sacks (tie-16th) generated. Over the final three weeks of regular season, New England averaged a mere 11.6 fantasy points allowed per game to opposing quarterbacks (least in the NFL); 18.9 fantasy points allowed per game to opposing wide receivers (13th-least) and just 3.4 fantasy points allowed per game to opposing tight ends (sixth-least). As you can see, they have been close to their season average in passing yards allowed, but have generated more interceptions than usual this season during the post-season. Ryan is playing at an other-worldly level during the post-season, while the Patriots' pass defense has been adequate, but allowed 314 net yards passing to the Steelers most recently - this is a neutral matchup for the powerful Atlanta offense.

Recent Stats and Projections

WEEKOPPoSNAPRSHYDTDTARGRECYDTDFumLPts
17 vs NO 6 0 0 0 2 1 10 0 0 1
21 vs NE PROJ-Tremblay * 0 * * 0 * * * *

Recent Game Summaries

2016 Week 14 vs LA (5 / 4 / 49 / 0 rec)

The most surprising impact for the Falcons came from the practice squad call-up who Matt Ryan described as knowledgeable and consistent before the game. Williams earned a quick 12 yards on a wide receiver screen to the right on the third drive of the game. He then gained eight yards for a first down as the slot left option during the fourth series on a 3rd and 5. He got open up the seam on third down during the sixth series, but Ryan got hit while throwing and the ball was off-target and Atlanta had to punt. He earned 19 yards on a quick out against tight coverage, earning 9 after the catch. He left the field for evaluation after taking a hard hit up the seam on third down target that he caught for a first down inside the Rams 10. The safety making the hit was hurt worse than Williams. Williams was taken in because the doctors made the call, the safety was helped off the field.

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