Falcons general manager Rich McKay said Sunday it's too early to tell if the team will discipline coach Jim Mora for his antics following the team's overtime loss at Tampa Bay. "Let me get through the weekend," said McKay, who also is the Falcons president. "Right now I just don't know." The 27-24 defeat on Saturday eliminated Atlanta from playoff contention. After the game, in his regularly scheduled postgame chat with radio flagship analyst Dave Archer, Mora was asked to explain why the Falcons punted from their 24 when facing fourth-and-2 with 1:08 remaining in overtime. Even though Michael Koenen's punt went 53 yards, Mark Jones' 28-yard return put the Buccaneers in position to win the game on Matt Bryant's field goal five plays later. According to several team and radio station employees, Mora abruptly removed his headset after hearing Archer's question and threw it to the ground.
December 2005 - Atlanta Falcons Wiretap
Bucs Eliminate Falcons, Strengthen Playoff Hopes
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers defeated the Atlanta Falcons by means of a Matt Bryant 41-yard field goal with only 15 seconds remaining in the extra 15 minutes. "I mean, one minute, you're thinking, 'OK, we're going to win!' Said Bryant. ?And then something would go wrong and it was, 'I can't believe we're going to lose the thing!' It's kind of been like that all season, I suppose, for us. The one positive thing you can say is that this team is certainly battle-tested." Falcons owner Arthur Blank told the Atlanta Journal Constitution last week that not making the playoffs might not necessarily be viewed as a failure, but that sentiment didn't fly too well in Atlanta's locker room following the latest disappointing defeat. "We need to re-evaluate a lot of things around here," quarterback Michael Vick said.
Vick Injures Rib In Win Over Saints
Michael Vick gave the Falcons the shot in the arm they needed. Then Atlanta's immediate future took a shot to the ribs. Vick ran for two touchdowns and passed for another score Monday night to lead the Falcons over the New Orleans Saints 36-17. But a late hit knocked Vick to the turf and out of the game in the fourth quarter. The NFL's most electric runner writhed in pain and seemed to be favoring his back. The injury was announced as bruised ribs, and coach Jim Mora appeared confident that his quarterback would be ready for Sunday's game at Chicago. "Mike doesn't miss games," Mora said. "He'll do whatever it takes to get ready to go." Vick was the difference as the Falcons bounced back after losing three of four games to fall behind in the NFC playoff picture. Atlanta improved to 3-0 in Monday night games this season and Vick remained a perfect 5-0 against the Saints (3-10), who have lost eight of their last nine games. Vick had scoring runs of 2 and 17 yards, and he threw a 54-yard touchdown pass to rookie Roddy White on a flea-flicker play. A vicious late hit from linebacker Ronald McKinnon, who drew a roughing-the-passer penalty, knocked Vick to the turf and he was slow to get up. Vick stayed in for two more plays, but the pain was too much -- he called a timeout with 9:21 left, slowly walked off the field and was escorted to the locker room. "I landed with a guy's foot right on my ribs," Vick said. "Then I aggravated it when I took one more hit."