At 4:15 Eastern Time, an event that hasn't taken place in a while unfolded. The Atlanta Falcons won a game that they wanted to win. Given all their off field problems with Michael Vick's imprisonment and the error in judgement by Arthur Blank in hiring a coach that would bolt on them faster than a man that just found out he got his girlfriend pregant in Bobby Petrino.
The Falcons ended a sorry season with a win over a Seattle team that already decided that they were going to rest the majority of their starters before the post-season began. Atlanta is a team that needs an identity other than Micheal Vick and somehow have to rinse the stench of the Petrino departure to Fayetteville out of their mouths as well as losing Bill Parcells and hire a new head coach, someone that will inspire his players to play well, play hard and stay out of trouble. That coach has to be his own man as well and if that means taking the Petrino playbook and tossing the damned thing into the Chattahoochee River, then so be it. Then they are in need of a general manager. Rich McKay did as well as he could but it's time for him to take another job with the team. They will draft third in the 2008 Draft, which I hope they will find a quarterback (Tebow, Brennan, et al) and build around their strengths, not their weaknesses.
Micheal Vick, for the most part, is talented. But he didn't do the team or himself any good when he partook in dog fighting. DeAngelo Hall didn't exactly endear himself to others when he ripped Petrino (albeit deservedly) to shreds in public. Warwick Dunn and Keith Brooking are the only major stars on that ball club and one could also include Morten Anderson. Someone needs to step up and take the mantle of leadership if the Falcons are ever going to be a playoff contender, let alone have another shot at the Super Bowl.
To paraphrase Gerald Ford, "Atlanta's long nightmare is over." Now the actual work begins.