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Quinn’s decision might’ve been right but everything else was wrong
October 23, 2016 Atlanta: Falcons head coach Dan Quinn looks for a call from the official as wide receiver Julio Jones is knocked out of bounds in over time after making a catch that was ruled out of bounds against the Chargers in an NFL football game on Sunday, Oct. 23, 2016, in Atlanta.   Curtis Compton /ccompton@ajc.com

10:23 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 23, 2016

Falcons head coach Dan Quinn made a crucial fourth-and-1 decision that backfired Sunday but there were other reasons the Falcons lost the game. (Curtis Compton / ccompton@ajc.com) Ensuring nobody will declare, “I’m certain the Falcons will make the playoffs,” for at least several weeks and possibly the remainder of the ...

Throwback performance: Falcons blow 27-10 lead and lose
Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan throws an interception to San Diego inside linebacker Denzel Perryman in the fourth quarter, eventually leading to a game-tying field goal by the Chargers. The Falcons blew a 27-10 lead and lost in overtime 30-27. (AP photo)

Updated: 9:19 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 23, 2016

They had to have one of these games just to remind everybody: Don’t get comfortable. Silly penalties. Dreadful defense, especially on third down. A late-game turnover. A debatable fourth-down decision by the head coach backfires. A 27-10 lead … blown to bits. “This stinks for our team,” Dan Quinn said. ...
If Howard can help Hawks, he’ll change how his story is written
(Dwight Howard illustration by Phill Flanders for the AJC)

2:00 p.m. Friday, Oct. 21, 2016

In so many ways, Dwight Howard checks every box.Hometown kid returns to Atlanta with a smile as wide as 285. Rebounding and defensive force fills long-time franchise void. Perennial All-Star vows to help repair a wounded franchise that’s rapidly losing our attention.In so many ways, Dwight Howard stomps on every ...
Weekend Predictions: Dogs, Jackets hibernate; Falcons, Bama roll

3:01 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 20, 2016

Hello, and welcome back to the remains of the college football season, or as Georgia and Georgia Tech fans like to call it: Googling for Motel 6’s in Shreveport around Christmas. (Let your mind wander. Imagine a Dogs-Jackets rematch in the Independence Bowl. Would you not watch that over any other ...

Criticism warranted, but conclusions about Smart premature
Georgia coach Kirby Smart has a lot to prove as a head coach, but he will be given the time to prove it. (Brant Sanderlin / bsanderlin@ajc.com)

3:07 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 18, 2016

There is a tendency in sports, as in life and mutant political races, to have every sudden development morph into a misguided absolute or a knee-jerk social-media narrative. Look no further than Georgia football as a microcosm of this universe: Kirby Smart is struggling, so it’s clear Georgia made a ...
Podcast: Johnson on critics, future; will Jackets finish better than Dogs?
October 15, 2016 Atlanta - Georgia Tech head coach Paul Johnson shouts instructions in the second half at Bobby Dodd Stadium on Saturday, October 15, 2016. Georgia Tech won 35-24 over the Georgia Southern. HYOSUB SHIN / HSHIN@AJC.COM

8:43 a.m. Monday, Oct. 17, 2016

Georgia Tech’s win over Georgia Southern ended a three-game skid but what can the Jackets accomplish in their last five regular season games? (Hyosub Shin / hshin@ajc.com) Georgia Tech had a significant win over Georgia Southern Saturday – significant because any win by either of the two major local football ...

Georgia playing to level of opponents — and against Vandy, that’s bad
October 15, 2016 Athens, GA:Georgia Bulldogs quarterback Jacob Eason is helped up by Georgia teammate  Greg Pyke after he was sacked to bring up 4th and 15 in the 3rd quarter. Vanderbilt Commodores at Sanford Stadium Saturday October 15, 2016. BRANT SANDERLIN/BSANDERLIN@AJC.COM

7:07 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 15, 2016

Georgia quarterback Jacob Eason is helped up by teammate Greg Pyke after he was sacked to bring up 4th and 15 in the 3rd quarter Saturday. The Bulldogs lost to Vanderbilt 17-16 on at Sanford Stadium. (Brant Sanderlin bsanderlin@ajc.com) ATHENS — Georgia coach Kirby Smart understands that great teams play ...

Georgia’s makeover looks more like a decline
Georgia coach Kirby Smart walks off the field after falling to Vanderbilt 17-16 at Sanford Stadium, dropping his team to 4-3 overall and 2-3 in the SEC. (Brant Sanderlin / bsanderlin@ajc.com)

6:14 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 15, 2016

Kirby Smart has said several times that changing a football program’s mindset and implementing his blueprint can take time — it’s like turning a battleship. But seven games into the season, it’s clear there are two problem with that soundbite:This battleship won 10 games last season.This battleship looks like it’s ...
Weekend Predictions: Dogs, Jackets win easily, Falcons finally go down

3:55 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 13, 2016

Welcome back to Weekend Predictions, where by going 10-3 against the spread last week we again validated our mission statement, which is to put you on the road to financial freedom by providing valuable insight into the complex world of sports investment strategy and international markets, although I’m not really sure ...

Podcast blog: Braves should have done a little more for Snitker
FILE - In this June 29, 2016, file photo, Atlanta Braves interim manager Brian Snitker (43) watches in the ninth inning of a baseball game against the Cleveland Indians,in Atlanta. The Braves have named Snitker as manager, Tuesday, Oct. 11, 2016, rewarding him for reversing the team’s direction in his role as interim manager this season.  (AP Photo/Todd Kirkland, File)

8:28 a.m. Thursday, Oct. 13, 2016

Did the Braves send the wrong message by giving new manager Brian Snitker only a one-year guaranteed contract with a one-year club option? (AP photo) I understand why Brian Snitker is nothing but thankful this morning to be the manager of the Braves after being rewarded for doing a wonderful ...

Brian Snitker, a 40-year temp, finally gets his shot
Braves interim manager Brian Snitker talks with reporters in the dugout before a baseball game against the Pittsburgh Pirates in May after taking over for the fired Fredi Gonzalez. (AP photo)

3:10 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 11, 2016

The interim manager is now the permanent manager. Or at least as permanent as a one-year guaranteed contract suggests. The Braves love Brian Snitker. They love the fact he put his arms around a wounded team and rescued their season. They love that he won almost as many games as ...
Braves’ Snitker an unusual choice but not necessarily wrong choice
Atlanta Braves interim manager Brian Snitker looks over the empty clubhouse one day after the Braves finished the 2016 season, Monday, Oct. 3, 2016, in Atlanta. (Curtis Compton/Atlanta Journal-Constitution via AP)

8:36 a.m. Tuesday, Oct. 11, 2016

Updated: 9:10 a.m. Brian Snitker has been named the Braves’ new manager, and my first thought isn’t, “Genius!” or “Morons!” Because, really, nobody ever knows how a new coach/manager is going to turn out in sports, and what may seem like an inspired decision today may cause many folks several months ...

Podcast: Blank on future, Vick and his plans to fire Petrino anyway

7:00 a.m. Monday, Oct. 10, 2016

Arthur Blank, seen here reading a newspaper while floating on the Dead Sea on a print in his office. was revealing on a number of topics in a recent interview. There is no Atlanta sports figure happier today than Falcons owner Arthur Blank. His team has four straight, including Sunday’s ...

Jacob Eason struggles in Georgia’s win but it’s a little early to jump ship
October 9, 2016 Columbia, SC: Georgia Bulldogs quarterback Jacob Eason gives a thumbs up a receiver, indicating he was finished warming up.   Georgia Bulldogs take on the South Carolina Gamecocks Sunday October 9, 2016 at Williams- Brice Stadium in Columbia, SC.  The game was delayed one day due to hurricane Matthew which hit the East Coast, including much of South Carolina  BRANT SANDERLIN/BSANDERLIN@AJC.COM

9:11 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 9, 2016

Georgia Bulldogs quarterback Jacob Eason gives a thumbs up sign but his performance against South Carolina was not great. The freshman completed only five of 17 passes for 29 yards and a touchdown with an interception in the 28-14 win. (Brant Sanderlin / bsanderlin@ajc.com) COLUMBIA, S.C. — He’s a freshman. ...

After past two weeks, any win looks good to Georgia
Running back Nick Chubb, in his first full game back from an injury, rushed for both of Georgia’s touchdowns in the first half against South Carolina Sunday. The game was rescheduled from Saturday because of Hurricane Matthew. (Brant Sanderlin / bsanderlin@ajc.com)

Updated: 8:45 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 9, 2016

Having proven in consecutive weeks that it’s capable of being both bludgeoned (45-14 by Ole Miss) or falling to the sudden whims of evil football gods (Tennessee’s Hail Mary), Georgia wasn’t mandating dominance this week.Simply affirming it was not about to circle the drain would be sufficient progress.“I was interested ...
Braves wrong to blame McDowell for pitching issues
Braves pitching coach Roger McDowell confers with prospect Sean Newcomb during spring training at the team’s Disney sports complex. (Curtis Compton / ccompton@ajc.com)

12:42 p.m. Friday, Oct. 7, 2016

Roger McDowell is out as Braves pitching coach. Big mistake. One possible theory for Friday’s decision to not pick up the option on McDowell’s contract for next season — effectively firing him — is that this means the Braves will hire Bud Black as their new manager. Black is a ...
Struggling prospects? Must be McDowell’s fault, right? Wrong
022716 LAKE BUENA VISTA: Braves pitcher Sean Newcomb confers with pitching coach Roger McDowell at spring training on Saturday, Feb 27, 2016, at the ESPN Wide World of Sports, Lake Buena Vista, FL.  Curtis Compton / ccompton@ajc.com

11:15 a.m. Friday, Oct. 7, 2016

Braves pitching coach Roger McDowell converses with prospect Sean Newcomb in spring training. The Braves declined to pick up McDowell’s option for next season. (Curtis Compton / ccompton@ajc.com) Roger McDowell is out as Braves pitching coach. Big mistake. One possible theory for Friday’s decision to not pick up the option ...

Weekend Predictions: Georgia wins over remains of Spurrier’s mess

4:17 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 6, 2016

Before breaking down this week’s big game — and, besides, I need more time to process how it’s possible “every kid did his job” on a blundered Hail Mary last week against Tennessee, according to Georgia coach Kirby Smart; so we can only imagine what bad pass coverage on a ...

New: ‘We Never Played The Game’ podcast (Arthur Blank, Part I)

8:02 a.m. Thursday, Oct. 6, 2016

Thanks to two-time Pulitzer Prize winner Mike Luckovich who did this as a favor and for no compensation. I owe him a latte. Welcome to a new venture. This morning, WSB’s Zach Klein and I are excited to launch the, “We Never Played The Game” podcast. The name comes from ...

After massive rebuild, Braves still need starting pitching
Braves president of baseball operations John Hart (center) and general manager John Coppolella (right) have three major decisions this offseason, including whether to retain interim manager Brian Snitker. (Curtis Compton /ccompton@ajc.com)

Updated: 4:31 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 4, 2016

It’s much easier to tear down a team than it is to build it up. That is certainly true in baseball. Front office executives sell the public on hopes for the future while slashing current and future payroll commitments, dumping veterans and and stockpiling prospects, draft picks and international signing ...
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