Falcons eliminated from playoff chase in a familiar fashion

BALTIMORE (AP) — The Atlanta Falcons saw their slim playoff hopes end by virtue of a chilling defeat that featured a familiar slow start and ended with coach Arthur Smith again talking about the team’s need to show progress. In between the opening kickoff and final whistle of Saturday’s 17-9 setback against the Baltimore Ravens, the Falcons were plagued by untimely penalties, a costly turnover and poor execution in the red zone. The loss eliminated Atlanta from playoff contention. It was a fate that seemed inevitable after the team took a nosedive following a 3-3 start.

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