WATCH: Missed extra point, officiating gaffes don't exonerate Dan Quinn against Cardinals
The second half in Week 6 against the Arizona Cardinals was the Falcons' best half in weeks. Atlanta scored 23 points and held Arizona to 147 offensive yards in the final 30 minutes Sunday.
If not for a missed extra point, the Falcons-Cardinals matchup probably heads into overtime. If not for a favorable spot for the Cardinals on their final third-down try or a couple other officiating gaffes earlier in the game, the Falcons could have won in regulation.
However, would've, could've and should've won't save Dan Quinn his job.
Last week, I said Quinn would be coaching for his job in these next three games, and that the Falcons would have to win two of the next three for Quinn to last past the bye week. Falcons owner Arthur Blank didn't put a win number on it like I did, but according to Ian Rapoport of NFL.com, Blank "wants to see progress over the next three weeks before the Week 9 bye or changes could come."
Is the second-half turnover enough progress? Only Blank can really answer that, but my answer would be no. The Falcons defense played just as terribly in the first half as it has all season, giving up 300 total yards before halftime. Atlanta allowed rookie Kyler Murray to go 16 of 19 and average more than 12 yards per pass in the first half, and the Falcons found themselves in a three-possession hole again early in the third quarter. Despite the second-half turnaround, Sunday was the first time Murray threw a touchdown without an interception in an NFL game.
To be clear, I'm not calling for Quinn to be fired right now. My point is if Quinn is indeed coaching for his job in the three games before the bye, Sunday's performance is at best a wash or mulligan for the beleaguered Falcons head man. Really, it makes the next two weeks against much tougher competition -- the Rams and Seahawks -- all that much more important.