The Falcons and Rams present the most exciting matchup of the NFL Playoffs thus far.

These teams both rank in the top ten in total offense, according to Football Outsiders, and there will be superstar playmakers all over the field at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. This will be the first NFL playoff game in L.A. in 24 years, and football fans everywhere will enjoy this game that contains so many different aspects of excitement.

Rams Offense vs Falcons Defense

The Falcons have a ton of speed and talent on the defensive side of the ball, but they've been unable to execute as a unit this season as they ranked 22nd in defensive DVOA in 2017.

They'll need to step up their level of play against a Rams offense that ranks in the top ten in rushing and passing offense according to Football Outsiders.

Rams running back Todd Gurley earned a week off during their final game of the season after he gained 2,093 yards from scrimmage over the first 16 games of the year. He may win the MVP award following his stellar season, and the Falcons' defense will have his name at the top of the scouting report this week.

Falcons linebackers Deion Jones and De'Vondre Campbell are extremely athletic, and safety Keanu Neal is one of the best run defenders at his position in the entire league. If Grady Jarrett and Dontari Poe are able to disrupt the running game along the interior of the defensive line, they could force Jared Goff to beat them through the air in his first career playoff game.

Falcons Offense vs Rams Defense

The Falcons' offense has fallen off a bit from their historic 2016 season after a change at offensive coordinator this offseason. However, they still have almost all of the same talent from last year's Super Bowl run, and Atlanta's offense remained in the top ten in 2017.

One criticism of the Falcons' game plan this year has been their unwillingness to stick to the run.

Devonta Freeman and Tevin Coleman form one of the league's best running back duos, and they'll be going up against a Rams defense that ranks 22nd against the run according to Football Outsiders.

The Rams' linebackers aren't very strong run defenders, and Steve Sarkisian should try to take advantage of that mismatch this weekend.

TV Schedule

Saturday, January 6th, 8:15 PM ET on ESPN


Saturday's game in Los Angeles should be a shootout, but each of these defenses is capable of playing at a high level and scheming up ways to slow down the high-flying offenses on the other side of the ball. The Falcons have much more playoff experience than this young Rams team, although they didn't have to play away from home on last year's trip to the Super Bowl.

I don't trust Jared Goff in a playoff game, and Atlanta has the necessary talent to pull off a Wild Card Round upset. The Falcons will come away with a win in Los Angeles and move on in the defense of their NFC title.