Vaughn McClure, ESPN Staff Writer 26d

Falcons' Brian Poole one of ESPN's Week 3 Unsung Heroes

Atlanta Falcons nickelback Brian Poole, who made the game-saving tackle in Sunday's 30-26 win over the Detroit Lions, was one of three named to ESPN Stats and Info's NFL Unsung Heroes Honor Roll.

Poole joined Jacksonville tight end Marcedes Lewis and Philadelphia coach Doug Pederson as the honorees.

Poole knocked Kenny Golladay off his route then switched back inside and got just enough of his right hand on Golden Tate to pull Tate back on a third-down, goal-line reception. It was originally ruled a touchdown, but after an official review, Tate was declared short of the end zone with eight seconds remaining. And the 10-second runoff, a rule put in place inside the two-minute mark to prevent free stoppages of the clock, meant the game was over since the clock shouldn't have been stopped, based on Poole dropping Tate short.

Falcons coach Dan Quinn talked Monday about his reaction to Poole's play.

"Just one of real gratitude for how hard Poole competes," Quinn said. "It’s been that way for a long time with him. I can remember some of his first training camp practices here in 2016 where other guys were counting in the line of one-on-ones who not to go against Julio Jones, he was counting to go against him, and that spoke of the competitor that he is.

"He’s turned into a really excellent addition to our secondary. Not only is he a really good tackler, and you probably saw that on the screen play early in the game where he was able to shed the blocker and make an excellent tackle. ... On that (goal-line) play, that wasn’t his guy, and so he had his guy man-to-man, and as Golden Tate came back behind the line, he saw the play, he stopped and went to go finish to try and make one."

Poole recorded nine tackles in the game, including seven solos. Both were career highs. He's tied for fourth among defensive backs with 17 solo tackles through three games.

Poole joined the Falcons undrafted out of Florida in 2016.

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