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Latest from Mark Bradley

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On a snowy day, we light the Hot Stove: What’s on Braves GM Alex Anthopolous’ to-do list?
 For the second time this silly winter, we’re Ice Station A-town. The only recourse is to stay home, think warm thoughts and note that, for the under-new-management Atlanta Braves, spring training commences in 27 days.  After the constant motion of the past three offseasons, this one – apart from the thunderclap of MLB sanctions...

Posted: a day ago

For the second time this silly winter, we’re Ice Station A-town. The only recourse is to stay home, think warm thoughts and note that, for the under-new-management Atlanta Braves, spring training commences in 27 days.  After the constant motion of the past three offseasons, this one – apart from the thunderclap of MLB sanctions...
Football Outsiders: Falcons’ last series in Philly really was awful
 Anyone who frequents this space occasionally – and bless you for so doing – knows that I’m a major fan of Football Outsiders. At the risk of spoiling the ending, here’s what Football Outsiders’ Scott Kacsmar thought of the Atlanta Falcons’ goal-to-go series against Philadelphia:  Not much. ...

Posted: 2 days ago

Anyone who frequents this space occasionally – and bless you for so doing – knows that I’m a major fan of Football Outsiders. At the risk of spoiling the ending, here’s what Football Outsiders’ Scott Kacsmar thought of the Atlanta Falcons’ goal-to-go series against Philadelphia:  Not much. ...
The failure of the Falcons’ season was a failure of coaching
 Ask yourself this: Had Carson Wentz been healthy Saturday and the Falcons  reduced to deploying Matt Schaub, how big would the Eagles have won? Something like 24-7, right? In your wildest dream, could you envision the Falcons doing with their backup quarterback what Philadelphia did with its? No? So how did the Eagles win by five on a day...

Posted: 3 days ago

Ask yourself this: Had Carson Wentz been healthy Saturday and the Falcons reduced to deploying Matt Schaub, how big would the Eagles have won? Something like 24-7, right? In your wildest dream, could you envision the Falcons doing with their backup quarterback what Philadelphia did with its? No? So how did the Eagles win by five on a day...
There’s no sugar-coating this: The Falcons blew another one
 The team infamous for blowing the Super Bowl just blew another playoff game. Yes, it was on the road. Yes, it was against the NFC’s No. 1 seed. Yes, it was windy. But this No. 1 seed lost its No. 1 quarterback last month. There can be no excuses. The Falcons had a clear path to the conference championship game and fell flat.  If...

Posted: 5 days ago

The team infamous for blowing the Super Bowl just blew another playoff game. Yes, it was on the road. Yes, it was against the NFC’s No. 1 seed. Yes, it was windy. But this No. 1 seed lost its No. 1 quarterback last month. There can be no excuses. The Falcons had a clear path to the conference championship game and fell flat.  If...
Keith Jackson, 1928-2018: The Georgia boy who became the voice of college football
 Vin Scully worked every sport, but we don’t think of him as the man who called Dwight Clark’s catch for CBS. (Though he was.) We think of him as, on both coasts, the Voice of the Dodgers. We think of him on the final pitch of Koufax’s perfect game: “Two-and-two to Harvey Kuenn …”  Cawood Ledford called...

Posted: 5 days ago

Vin Scully worked every sport, but we don’t think of him as the man who called Dwight Clark’s catch for CBS. (Though he was.) We think of him as, on both coasts, the Voice of the Dodgers. We think of him on the final pitch of Koufax’s perfect game: “Two-and-two to Harvey Kuenn …”  Cawood Ledford called...
Jacob Eason: Not the QB of UGA’s dreams, but a Darn Good Dog
 Some Georgia fans called this shot around 6:30 p.m. Sept. 2. From the moment Jacob Eason was injured against Appalachian State and Jake Fromm took over and did not stink, there seemed no reason for Eason to stick around. He just announced, via Twitter, that he’s leaving.  It’s believed he’s bound for Washington, him...

Posted: 6 days ago

Some Georgia fans called this shot around 6:30 p.m. Sept. 2. From the moment Jacob Eason was injured against Appalachian State and Jake Fromm took over and did not stink, there seemed no reason for Eason to stick around. He just announced, via Twitter, that he’s leaving.  It’s believed he’s bound for Washington, him...
Are the Falcons a Super Bowl team? Unclear. Could they get there? Yes
 For the last team into the NFC side of the playoff grid, the Atlanta Falcons have a rather clear path to the Super Bowl. They can make it to Minneapolis without having to meet any team that qualified for postseason last year, although they might have to go through Minneapolis to reach Minneapolis. They can reach Super Bowl 52 without having...

Posted: 8 days ago

For the last team into the NFC side of the playoff grid, the Atlanta Falcons have a rather clear path to the Super Bowl. They can make it to Minneapolis without having to meet any team that qualified for postseason last year, although they might have to go through Minneapolis to reach Minneapolis. They can reach Super Bowl 52 without having...
Calling (again) the roll of woe: The 5 most excruciating Atlanta losses
 We live in Atlanta, which has a metro area population of 5.7 million. We do not live in Twin Peaks (fictional pop. 51,201). But darned if it doesn’t feel as if, sports-wise, we’re trapped in a David Lynch production, which we can all agree isn’t a place you want to be.  In the original run of “Twin Peaks,&rdquo...

Posted: 9 days ago

We live in Atlanta, which has a metro area population of 5.7 million. We do not live in Twin Peaks (fictional pop. 51,201). But darned if it doesn’t feel as if, sports-wise, we’re trapped in a David Lynch production, which we can all agree isn’t a place you want to be.  In the original run of “Twin Peaks,&rdquo...
If you thought you’d seen this UGA loss before ... well,you had
 The final play reminded me of another game I’d covered, and no, not Super Bowl 51. (We’ve covered that one here.) The final play reminded me of the 2012 SEC championship, which also pitted Georgia against Alabama and was likewise played in this city. On that day, Georgia led by double figures. On that day, Georgia did not win...

Posted: 9 days ago

The final play reminded me of another game I’d covered, and no, not Super Bowl 51. (We’ve covered that one here.) The final play reminded me of the 2012 SEC championship, which also pitted Georgia against Alabama and was likewise played in this city. On that day, Georgia led by double figures. On that day, Georgia did not win...
First the Falcons, now UGA: Another title game, another lead lost, another overtime crusher
 They were so close. They led the championship game by 10 points with 10 minutes remaining. They had dominated their favored opponent. They had only to hold on. They could not. They went to overtime. They lost.  And no, this time we don’t mean the Atlanta Falcons.  Maybe there really is something in our water. Maybe Somebody...

Posted: 9 days ago

They were so close. They led the championship game by 10 points with 10 minutes remaining. They had dominated their favored opponent. They had only to hold on. They could not. They went to overtime. They lost.  And no, this time we don’t mean the Atlanta Falcons.  Maybe there really is something in our water. Maybe Somebody...
For the title: The great Saban and Bama vs. the Next Saban and UGA
 There wasn’t much interaction. Kirby Smart didn’t make eye contact with his former boss on the shared dais Sunday morning, though that might have been because the table was cut in half and the towering College Football Playoff trophy divided them. Smart, once Nick Saban’s defensive coordinator and now the only opponent standing...

Posted: 11 days ago

There wasn’t much interaction. Kirby Smart didn’t make eye contact with his former boss on the shared dais Sunday morning, though that might have been because the table was cut in half and the towering College Football Playoff trophy divided them. Smart, once Nick Saban’s defensive coordinator and now the only opponent standing...
Us vs. Them? The tangled history of Georgia’s and Alabama’s coaches
 When last Georgia met Alabama, the man who’s now the Bulldogs’ head coach was coordinating the Crimson Tide’s defense. The man who coordinates Bama’s defense was coordinating Georgia’s. The man who coordinates the Bulldogs’ defense was tutoring Alabama’s secondary. The man who handles Georgia&rsquo...

Posted: 12 days ago

When last Georgia met Alabama, the man who’s now the Bulldogs’ head coach was coordinating the Crimson Tide’s defense. The man who coordinates Bama’s defense was coordinating Georgia’s. The man who coordinates the Bulldogs’ defense was tutoring Alabama’s secondary. The man who handles Georgia&rsquo...
Welcome to Atlanta, football fans. What could possibly go wrong?
 On the behalf of nobody but me, let me say, “Welcome to Atlanta.” I greet you visitors even though every single one of you surely has been here before. Georgia fans gathered under the stationary roof of Mercedes-Benz Stadium for the SEC Championship game just last month. Alabama folks helped christen that building for college...

Posted: 13 days ago

On the behalf of nobody but me, let me say, “Welcome to Atlanta.” I greet you visitors even though every single one of you surely has been here before. Georgia fans gathered under the stationary roof of Mercedes-Benz Stadium for the SEC Championship game just last month. Alabama folks helped christen that building for college...
Can we please stop with the ‘Jake-Fromm-can’t-throw’ nonsense?
 Georgia’s first play of the Rose Bowl was a pass: It was caught by Javon Wims for 21 yards. Georgia’s first touchdown came on a pass to Sony Michel. Georgia’s first lead came on a pass to Wims. Indeed, 29 of Georgia’s 63 offensive plays – not quite half, but not far off – were of the forward-pass variety...

Posted: 14 days ago

Georgia’s first play of the Rose Bowl was a pass: It was caught by Javon Wims for 21 yards. Georgia’s first touchdown came on a pass to Sony Michel. Georgia’s first lead came on a pass to Wims. Indeed, 29 of Georgia’s 63 offensive plays – not quite half, but not far off – were of the forward-pass variety...
Say UGA beats Bama for the title in Atlanta: Where would it rank among local sports moments?
 Not trying to jinx anybody. Not trying to diminish anyone or anything that has come before. Just asking: Should the Georgia Bulldogs, who represent the flagship university of a state that has Atlanta as its capital, win the national championship by beating Alabama, the program that has won half of the past eight national championships &ndash...

Posted: 15 days ago

Not trying to jinx anybody. Not trying to diminish anyone or anything that has come before. Just asking: Should the Georgia Bulldogs, who represent the flagship university of a state that has Atlanta as its capital, win the national championship by beating Alabama, the program that has won half of the past eight national championships &ndash...
Georgia-Alabama: Atlanta’s title game just had to be this, did it not?
 Not everything in sports goes the way we want it. That’s one of the reasons we watch sports. As Kirby Smart said before the Rose Bowl, “A lot of outcomes are dictated by how you handle what happens. Not necessarily what happens, but how you handle what happens.” And, more often than not, we on the periphery are left to manage...

Posted: 16 days ago

Not everything in sports goes the way we want it. That’s one of the reasons we watch sports. As Kirby Smart said before the Rose Bowl, “A lot of outcomes are dictated by how you handle what happens. Not necessarily what happens, but how you handle what happens.” And, more often than not, we on the periphery are left to manage...
So it was destiny: Bama/Saban vs. UGA/Smart for the whole enchilada
 We’ll return to the astonishment of the Rose Bowl soon, but breaking news intervenes: The program that has modeled itself after Alabama will face Alabama in Mercedes-Benz Stadium one week hence. We’ve been dancing around this since October, and here it is: Georgia vs. Bama. Smart vs. Saban. Winner gets handed a trophy. Loser does...

Posted: 16 days ago

We’ll return to the astonishment of the Rose Bowl soon, but breaking news intervenes: The program that has modeled itself after Alabama will face Alabama in Mercedes-Benz Stadium one week hence. We’ve been dancing around this since October, and here it is: Georgia vs. Bama. Smart vs. Saban. Winner gets handed a trophy. Loser does...
Wonder Dogs: Georgia’s epic Rose Bowl comeback brings it to the cusp of a national title
 The Georgia Bulldogs trailed by 17 points with nearly half the game gone. They trailed by seven inside the final minute. They went to overtime, where offenses are supposed to hold sway, against the nation’s No. 1 offense.  And they won. In one of the greatest moments in the history of a program that, not so long ago, wondered if...

Posted: 17 days ago

The Georgia Bulldogs trailed by 17 points with nearly half the game gone. They trailed by seven inside the final minute. They went to overtime, where offenses are supposed to hold sway, against the nation’s No. 1 offense.  And they won. In one of the greatest moments in the history of a program that, not so long ago, wondered if...
Three out of three scribes agree: Georgia will outdo Oklahoma
 Earlier today, I picked Georgia to win the Rose Bowl 31-24. I also picked the Falcons to beat the Patriots in the Super Bowl, which looked really smart until the Falcons got really dumb.  As you doubtless know, I’ve been wrong a time or two (hundred). So, in the attempt to cross-check my conclusion, I asked two national writers...

Posted: 18 days ago

Earlier today, I picked Georgia to win the Rose Bowl 31-24. I also picked the Falcons to beat the Patriots in the Super Bowl, which looked really smart until the Falcons got really dumb.  As you doubtless know, I’ve been wrong a time or two (hundred). So, in the attempt to cross-check my conclusion, I asked two national writers...
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