The Falcons are in the midst of their worst season since Thomas Dimitroff and Mike Smith were hired as general manager and head coach.
So in owner Arthur Blank's eyes, they've earned the right to deal with a down year without any added pressure.
Blank, via the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, said Smith and Dimitroff will be brought back for the 2014 season no matter how this season turns out.
“They've earned it over the last five years,” Blank said. “This is a tough business. We've had a lot of injuries and there have been a lot of issues on top of the injuries and that is pretty obvious. The guys are proven leaders and proven by success. Their records speak for themselves. They'll do the work that has to be done with my full support. We'll get back to what we have to do. Right now, we have six more games that we have to play this year and we plan on competing hard in those games, winning if not all, as many as we can.”
Before Blank hired Dimitroff and Smith, the Falcons had never had back-to-back winning seasons. Smith accomplished that in his first two seasons and took the Falcons to the postseason in four of his first five years.
This year has been an anomaly, and isn't indicative of what the coach and GM have been able to accomplish.
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Aaron Wilson covers the Ravens for The Baltimore Sun.