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Three Big Things: Falcons Week

A look at the top storylines for Sunday's game


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Guess Who's Back?

In a little over 48 hours, Kyler Murray will make his long-awaited return to the State Farm Stadium grass, 335 days after tearing his ACL. Coach Jonathan Gannon said that it might not be the K1 fans have grown used to seeing prior to the tear, but it's another box that Murray has checked in this journey. Running back James Conner could also return this weekend after being on Injured Reserve. They could give the offense an explosive advantage it's been missing the previous weeks. Gannon knows that once the ball is kicked off on Sunday, his quarterback is "going to go out there, play his game, and help us win."

ATL's Top Targets

While their record might not tell the full story, the Falcons have a dominant trio of explosive offensive targets. First-round pick and Arizona native Bijan Robinson has been averaging five yards per carry and has collected more than 500 rushing yards. The tight end duo of Kyle Pitts and Jonnu Smith has also been effective for Arthur Smith's Falcons. They both rank among the top 10 in the league in receiving yards with a combined total of 811. The Falcons are the only team with two tight ends in the top 20. The Cardinals have played against some of the NFL's top tight ends already, and have done a solid job containing them. Against the 49ers, George Kittle only had one reception for nine yards and while Mark Andrews did score a touchdown for the Ravens, he was limited to 40 yards on the game.

Atlanta's "Super Bowl"

Falcons quarterback Taylor Heinicke told the Atlanta media this week "we're all putting in everything for this game, we've got a bye week next week, so this is the Super Bowl for us this week." Entering Week 10, the Falcons (4-5) sit a game behind the Saints (5-4) in the NFC South. After falling in back-to-back weeks to the Joshua Dobbs-led Vikings and the Titans in Will Levis' debut, the Falcons have lost three of their last four games. Following their bye, they'll have a date with the Saints. Before that, they'll have to face the Cardinals. The Cardinals will hope that the added adrenaline stemming from Murray will spoil Heinicke's Week 10 Super Bowl aspirations.