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Est. 1966


Former Atlanta Falcons defensive end Claude Humphrey gets tackled with the football.

Claude Humphrey - DE - 99.5 Sacks

AP via Clem Murray

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Did you know?

The Atlanta Falcons’ mascot was a live falcon for their first 15 seasons. During a practice in 1966, the falcon escaped only to be found later at a nearby Kraft food plant before being returned.

Team History

  • In 1965, the NFL awarded Rankin Smith the Atlanta franchise, marking the end of the city’s quest to obtain a professional football team.  
  • Owner Rankin Smith held a contest to decide the name of the franchise – won by a schoolteacher in Griffin, Georgia who suggested the “Falcons” name.
  • In 1971, the Falcons recorded their first winning season under head coach Norm Van Brocklin, going 7-6-1.  
  • In 1998, the Falcons achieved their greatest season to date, winning the NFC West with a 14-2 record. They earned a trip to the 1999 Super Bowl, but lost to the Denver Broncos, 34-19. 
  • In 2016, the Falcons went 11-5 and defeated the Green Bay Packers in the NFC Championship game to advance to the Super Bowl, losing to the New England Patriots, 34-28.   

Team Facts

  • Seasons: 59 (1966-2024)
  • Winningest Coach: (W-L-T) Mike Smith (66-46-0) 
  • Super Bowl Titles: 0  
  • Record going into 2024 season: (W-L-T) 390-503-6
  • Playoff Record:10-14 
  • Most Career Yards Rushing: Gerald Riggs, 6,631 (1982-88) 
  • Most Career Yards Passing: Matt Ryan, 59,735 (2008-21) 
  • Most Career Receptions: Julio Jones, 848 (2011-20) 
  • Most Career Sacks: Claude Humphrey, 99.5 (1968-78)*  
  • Most Career Interceptions: Rolland Lawrence, 39 (1973-80) 
  • Most Career Points: Matt Bryant, 1,163 (2009-19) 
  • Current Team Owner: Arthur Blank  

*Sacks prior to 1982 are not official


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