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Week 17: Bills vs. Falcons Preview Atlanta Falcons
The Falcons will be trying to keep their fading playoff hopes alive as they look to right a three game losing streak against the Bills inside the Georgia Dome. The Bills have not played in this stadium since Super Bowl XXVIII. Atlanta is coming off a lopsided loss at the hands of the Colts while the Bills are coming off a heartbreaking loss at home against the Patriots in overtime. It will be hard for the Bills to get up for this game that represents their best remaining chance at another victory this season.

Facts and Figures
Matchup: Buffalo (2-11) at Atlanta (6-7)
Date: Sunday December 23rd
Place: Georgia Dome
Time: 1:00pm
Television: CBS
Announcers: Craig Bolerjack and Trevor Matich
Spread: Falcons by 3 1/2
Series: Bills Lead 4-3
Last Meeting: Bills 23-17 in Buffalo in 1995
Falcons Offense: Rush (13th); Pass (23rd); overall (t-20th)
Falcons Defense: Rush (19th); Pass (31st); overall (30th)
Bills Offense: Rush (25th); Pass (13th); overall (15th)
Bills Defense: Rush (29th); Pass (8th); overall (19th)

Injury Update

The Bills will be without the services of starting running back Travis Henry who suffered a sprained knee against the Patriots last week. Peerless Price is day to day with a twisted ankle and is listed as questionable. Pat Williams will miss his second straight game with a fracture of his fibula. Rob Johnson remains out with a broken clavicle.

The Falcons lost star running back Jamal Anderson to a knee injury week 3 and he has been replaced by Maurice Smith who is probable with a knee and ankle injury.

For complete injury news throughout the week and the Official NFL Injury Report go to our Injury Page.

Key Matchups

LB Jay Foreman vs. FB Bob Christian: Christian may be the best receiving fullback the Bills face all year. All the linebackers will get a chance to cover him out of the backfield but in recent weeks Foreman has been the main man in these situations.

RB Shawn Bryson vs. LB Keith Brooking: Brooking is a bona fide all pro as he has had a huge year with 108 tackles. He will be the guy the Bills running backs and linemen will have to account for on every rush.

Bills Coverage Teams vs. KR Darrick Vaughn: The Bills have been victimized by poor field position in recent weeks and will need to keep Vaughn in check if they don't want to be playing on an uphill field again this week. Vaughn is averaging a healthy 25.3 yards per kickoff return. On the punt side, veteran Darrien Gordon is averaging a stout 15.1 yards per return.

RT Jonas Jennings vs. LE Patrick Kerney: Kerney has 10 1/2 sacks on the season and may be the biggest test of the year for the rookie right tackle. Jennings should get some help from TE Jay Riemersma in blocking Kerney.

DE Aaron Schobel vs. LT Bob Whitfield: This will be an interesting matchup between a wiley veteran and an up and coming rookie. Schobel is two sacks away from the club's rookie sack record and has played extremely well in recent weeks. Whitfield has seen it all in his 10 years in the league and will be good competition for Schobel.

Game Plan

When The Bills Have The Ball: Even without Travis Henry expect the Bills to run with Shawn Bryson. The running game has shown marignal success recently and the Bills are committed to it. However don't expect the Bills to ignore the passing game since the Falcons are have one of the worst pass defenses in the league.

When The Falcons Have The Ball: QB Chris Chandler usually spreads his passes around, look for him to do it against Buffalo as well. The Falcons will try to mixup passes with a healthy dose of Maurice Smith running the football as the Bills are weaker in run defense than in pass coverage.

Bills Daily Prediction

The Bills have yet to quit on the season so there is no reason to think they will quit this week. The Falcons know there playoff hopes are a longshot and may be poised for an upset. They have struggled all year at home and will probably struggle again, even against Buffalo: Bills 28, Falcons 24

Season Prediction Record: (8-5)
Season Record Against The Spread: (7-6)

Complete Statistical Matchup
Game Analysis and Review - Coming Monday!
Positional Breakdown and Grades - Coming Monday!

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