Atlanta’s New Winning Tradition?

It may be hard to believe – actually it is rather shocking – but the Atlanta Falcons have never had back-to-back winning seasons. Rather sad and pathetic, but hopefully those days are coming to a close. Please God (I will not pray for my team if you do not pray for the Bears, Bucks, and Panthers).

If the Falcons can win one of the last three games then they will have back-to-back winning seasons for the first time in franchise history. That is not to say they are going to make the playoffs, but it would be nice to finally get this monkey off our backs. Making the playoffs would be prosperity at its finest, so I am sure I am asking way too much. Still, one can dream, and as long as one is dreaming, is it too much for one to ask for back-to-back winning seasons and a repeat trip to the playoffs?

If you were a fan before the arrival of Vick, then you must feel my pain. You will feel my pain. Suffering follows…

1971 (7-6-1), 1972 (7-7), and 1973 (9-5) were nice runs, but the .500 season in 1972 mess up their first realistic shot at back-to-back winning seasons. I was a baby back then so it is not as if I was around to earn the right to bitch and moan. Lucky for me I can bitch as much as I want on these humble pages.

1977 (7-7) and 1978 (9-7) were close to back-to-back winning seasons, but that .500 thing got in the way again. At was at this point that I have my first memories of being crushed. That lost to Dallas really sucked. The disappointing 1979 (6-10) season spelled the end for another chance at glory.

1980 (12-4) was another great year, but f’ing Dallas made me cry again. How great would it have been to have the Dawgs win the National Championship and the Falcons win the Super Bowl? [Sigh …]

Then the long dry spell started. Some bastard decided to fire Leeman Bennett after the 1982 (5-4) season. Scabs suck, but come on; sacking Bennett sent the Falcons into a nasty spiral of eight sucky seasons in a row; all under .500 and all equally dismal.

Along comes 1991 (10-6); we made it out of our nasty funk, but who is kidding who? The run-and-shoot was never going to take us to the promise land. Of course the Falcons followed up with yet another loosing season – 1992 (6-10). Prosperity? Nope, we can have none of that stuff.

1995 (9-7) was a decent year, but it was too much to ask the Falcons to build on a decent year; 1996 (3-13). Feeling my pain yet?

Some how, some way (thanks to Jam) the 1998 (14-2) Falcons made it to the Super Bowl, only to be trampled upon by Elway and company. My kingdom for a prostitute! Thanks a lot Eugene f’ing Robinson. Notice a trend? 1999 (5-11). Disappointment as usual.

2002 (9-6-1) saw the complete pimping of an exciting Vick, including a nice little win at Green Bay in the NFL Wildcard Game. Of course you know what happened next, right? We are talking about the Falcons doing everything they can do to avoid prosperity. You guessed it, 2003 (5-11) was a bitter disappointment and cost Dan Reeves his job as head coach.

2004 (11-5) was a very nice run under first year head coach Jim Mora, Jr. So here we are, once again facing prosperity square in the eye. Can the 2005 Falcons improve on their current 8-5 record to manage back-to-back winning seasons for the first time in 39-year history? Will futility come to an end? Will the Falcons finally put to rest years and years of fan frustration? Probably too much to ask.

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