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2021 NFL Power Rankings: Atlanta Falcons

Throughout the 2021 NFL season, we will compile a consensus NFL Power Rankings that averages the rankings of all 32 NFL teams.

Here is where the Atlanta Falcons rank in terms of average, best and worst:

Below you will find a Week 8 roundup for the Falcons in our consensus 2021 NFL Power Rankings.

ESPN -- Rank: 19

Prediction we missed: WR Calvin Ridley's performance.

There were a few different options here (including the semblance of a Falcons pass rush), but I really believed Ridley would have a breakout season, putting him in the conversation with the NFL's top 10 receivers. Instead, Ridley has just 281 yards receiving and a career-worst 9.1 yards per reception. The Falcons will need Ridley if they are to make a playoff run -- at least a better version of the Ridley than they've been seeing over the first third of the season. -- Michael Rothstein

NFL.com -- Rank: 20

Matt Ryan and Kyle Pitts are officially a thing. The veteran quarterback and rookie phenom connected repeatedly on Sunday, including on two vital completions to set up Younghoe Koo's game-winner in a 30-28 victory over the Dolphins in Miami. It's hard to describe how different Pitts is: On the 28-yarder that put Atlanta in field-goal range in the final minutes, Pitts lined up on the outside against Xavien Howard, an All-Pro ballhawk who regularly shuts down No. 1 wideouts. Pitts beat Howard by a half step, then used his size to come down with the catch. Pitts' performance the last two weeks (16/282/1) backs up the pre-draft hype that positioned the former Florida standout as a generational talent.

CBS Sports -- Rank: 19

At 3-3, with a winnable game against the Panthers this week, they have really turned their season around. Matt Ryan is playing well and Kyle Pitts is emerging as a game-changing tight end.

USA Today -- Rank: 25

Appears they've figured out how to leverage Kyle Pitts' estimable talents. After exploding for 282 receiving yards over the past two games, he's on pace for 1,335 over the full season -- which would obliterate Hall of Famer Mike Ditka's rookie record for tight ends, 1,076 in 1961.

The Athletic -- Rank: 23

Trick or treat: We might not have reason to say this again this season, so here we go: We're grateful to the Falcons for giving us the most competitive game of Sunday's Week 7 slate. The Falcons might have more tricks than treats this season, but at least Kyle Pitts' 163-yard outing and Younghoe Koo's game-winning kick helped elevate a truly dreadful NFL day.

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