The Union Recorder

Local Sports

December 27, 2012

Falcons' Ryan closing regular season on hot streak

(Continued)

ATLANTA —

This is the second time in three years the Falcons will be the NFC's top seed in the playoffs. They were 13-3 in 2010, but lost to Green Bay in the playoffs.

Atlanta lost to the Giants in the first round of the playoffs last season, leaving Ryan 0-3 in the postseason.

Ryan said this team is more mature and better prepared for the playoffs.

"Probably the biggest difference with where we're at now and a couple years ago is the maturity of the football team," Ryan said.

"I think at this point everybody understands we've put ourselves in good position but we still have a lot of work to do. Nobody is content with where we're at and I think that's a little bit different than where we've been in the past."

NOTES: S William Moore, who has missed three games with a hamstring injury, was held out again Wednesday and likely will miss Sunday's game, according to Smith. "I would like for Williams to be ready to go but the doctors have got to make that determination," Smith said. WR Roddy White (knee), CB Christopher Owens (hamstring) and DE Cliff Matthews (hamstring) also missed practice, while DT Jonathan Babineaux (ribs) and DT Corey Peters (knee) were limited. ... WR Kevin Cone was placed on injured reserve to clear a spot for OL Joe Hawley, who returned last week from a four-game suspension after testing positive for a performance-enhancing substance.

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