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Koo Knew: Falcons Avoid 0-3 Start With Thrilling Win at Giants

Two winless teams meet in New York. Something - and somebody - had to give.

One drought ended. One felt like it might just be beginning.

And then two familiar Atlanta Falcons heroes - Matt Ryan and Younghoe Koo - happened.

Koo made a 40-yard field goal as time expired to give Atlanta the 17-14 victory.

For some time, it looked like the Giants might be the story. Saquon Barkley scored a touchdown early in the fourth quarter in Sunday's NFL Week 3 Falcons' visit to New York. It marked the potential superstar running back's first touchdown in 637 days.

It also marked a Giants lead that this Falcons offense seemed - for a moment -incapable of overcoming.

In the end, though, Atlanta's win was highlighted by a first-half TD toss by QB Ryan (to Olamide Zaccheaus), lifting him to 350 scoring passes for his career - elite company there. And it was highlighted by a Grady Jarrett-led defensive effort that included an early-game sack and a goal-line stand.

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And then another Ryan TD (to Lee Smith). And the clutch action late, including some involvement from rookie tight end Kyle Pitts, to keep the Falcons from starting out at 0-3 to begin the coach Arthur Smith era.

Both of these franchise have felt some recent-year pain; the Giants, like the Falcons, have sported losing records for three straight seasons. Barkley's ACL tear in Week 2 of the 2020 season created a dark cloud over that club then. Atlanta's 0-5 start did the same for the Falcons, costing then-coach Dan Quinn his job.

What is fixed in Atlanta? 

The Giants didn't play especially inspired football, even as Eli Manning was the subject of a halftime retirement ceremony. But the Falcons can now lay claim to being inspired ... . and to on the way to ending a drought.

READ MORE: Ryan's 2 TDs Key