A weekly examination of the Falcons' ESPN.com Power Ranking:
Preseason: 4 | Last Week: 29 | ESPN.com Power Ranking since 2002
The Falcons moved down a spot in the ESPN.com Power Rankings, back to No. 30, after Sunday's 22-21 loss to the Green Bay Packers at Lambeau Field.
At one point, the Falcons held a 21-10 edge but couldn't keep it despite creating two turnovers leading to touchdowns. They still haven't been able to string together consecutive wins this season after going 13-3 a year ago.
The Falcons did, however, get a chance to give their young players extensive playing time. Rookie cornerback Robert Alford played all the snaps at left cornerback after Asante Samuel was benched. Rookie right tackle Ryan Schraeder finished the game after Jeremy Trueblood started. And rookie safety Zeke Motta stepped in after Thomas DeCoud suffered a concussion.
The youth movement is certain to continue over the final three games as the Falcons try to establish momentum going into next season. At the same time, some of the veteran players surely want to show they deserve to stick around a little longer.
And from the standpoint of the fans, nothing would be greater than falling to the bottom of the NFL standings to secure the first overall draft pick. The Falcons current stand at the No. 3 position behind the Houston Texans and St. Louis Rams (via Washington).