Falcons owner: Mora's joke a 'boneheaded mistake'

Falcons coach Jim Mora said he thought he was being funny when he said during a Seattle radio interview that he'd leave Atlanta in a heartbeat to coach at his alma mater, the University of Washington.

Falcons owner Arthur Blank isn't laughing.

"He used very bad judgment," Blank told the Atlanta Journal Constitution on Saturday night, following Atlanta's 38-28 loss to Dallas -- the Falcons' fourth home defeat this season. "He made a very bad mistake, a boneheaded mistake, I would agree is a good definition. I think he's sincere in his apologies. Obviously, I don't feel good about it and he doesn't feel good about it and we shouldn't feel good about it."

Mora spent much of Friday providing damage control, apologizing for remarks he said were made in jest while being interviewed on KJR by Dave Mahler and Hugh Millen, a former roommate and teammate at Washington.

Blank said he hopes Mora learned from the experience.

"I wouldn't say it's done damage to his future," Blank told the newspaper. "I also don't think this is something where Jim is going to look back and say that was a really good thing. 'I helped myself in my career with the Atlanta Falcons.' On the other hand, you have to look at all the circumstances and what took place and feel that somebody is sincere in his apology and sincere in trying to learn from the experience.

"At least I hope that will be the case."

Mora said the fallout from all the publicity has worn on him.

"Did it affect me? Yes," Mora said in his postgame news conference. "My players, no. I thought they were extremely focused. I think it showed when we came back from a 14-0 deficit. I hope that showed what kind of heart they have. Unfortunately, it wasn't enough."