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    NFL Preseason Preview - Atlanta (1-0) at Houston (0-1)



    By John McMullen, NFL Editor

    (SportsNetwork.com) - A pair of teams that suffered the ignominious trip from the penthouse to the outhouse last year continue preparations for the 2014 season when the Atlanta Falcons pay a visit to the Houston Texans at NRG Stadium.

    The Falcons, who are looking to rectify a dismal 4-12 record from a season ago, came away as the 16-10 victor in their preseason opener with Miami but their much-maligned defense stumbled against the Dolphins' starters.

    Sergio Castillo kicked a pair of second-half field goals to provide the winning margin for the Falcons at the Georgia Dome, capping a 13-play, 76-yard drive with a 21-yard boot that snapped a 10-10 deadlock late in the third quarter. He then added a 34-yard field goal on the Falcons' next possession, a kick set up by Sean Renfree's 57-yard pass to rookie running back Devonta Freeman.

    The Dolphins marched down to the Atlanta 4-yard line with under three minutes to play, but quarterback Seth Lobato mishandled a center exchange and the Falcons' Nosa Eguae pounced on the fumble to kill the scoring opportunity.

    Matt Ryan played just one series for Atlanta but was flawless, going 7-for-7 for 53 yards on a 15-play sequence that ended in a Jacquizz Rodgers 2-yard run that tied the game at 7-7 near the end of the opening quarter.

    Dolphins QB Ryan Tannehill also excelled on his lone drive for Miami, however, hitting on all six of his throws for 62 yards on a jaunt the quarterback culminated with a 6-yard touchdown strike to Brandon Gibson.

    The Texans, meanwhile, picked up right where they left off from their disastrous 2-14 campaign from a year ago, getting whitewashed by Arizona, 32-0, in their preseason opener.

    Quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick, who was signed as a free agent in the offseason and is expected to be the starter when the regular season begins, had an inauspicious debut as he went just 6-for-14 for 55 yards and was picked off twice in Bill O'Brien's debut as the team's head coach.

    Top overall pick Jadeveon Clowney, who had sports hernia surgery in June, saw limited play and had one tackle in his first professional action.

    The Falcons and Texans have never met in the preseason, but have played three times during the regular season. Houston holds a 2-1 advantage over Atlanta in the all-time series, including a 17-10 win at NRG Stadium in 2011.

    08/14 13:27:15 ET

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    Welcome to Great38 Tampa Bay WTTA-TV/DT - WFLA News Channel 8

    Welcome to Great38 Tampa Bay WTTA-TV/DT - WFLA News Channel 8

      Great 38: Win tickets to Daytona 500

      Updated:

      Here's your chance to win tickets to the 2015 Daytona 500. Entering is easy, simply fill out the entry form included. More>>

      • Great Stuff

      News Now: Media General CEO talks about his career, future for company Video included

      Updated:

      In December, LIN Media and Media General merged to create the second largest broadcasting company in the country. The former CEO and President of LIN Media, Vince Sadusky, was placed at the helm of the new and improved Media General. More>>

      Bill Schifino, Jr talks about being President-Elect of the Florida Bar Video included

      Updated:

      Earlier this month, Bill Schifino, Jr. was announced as the 2015-16 President-Elect of the Florida Bar. Schifino comes to this position with a strong resume. More>>

      Trio sets off on 900 mile trek across Florida Video included

      Updated:

      Joe Guthrie, Mallory Lykes Dimmitt, and Carlton Ward Jr. are embarking on a journey of a lifetime. The trio are setting off on a 70-day, 900 mile trek across the state???without any automobiles.
      More>>

      How this guide dog helps one blind triathlete chase her Paralympic dream

      Updated:

      Every time Paralympic hopeful Amy Dixon makes it to the end of another grueling triathlon, she knows her trusty companion will be waiting for her at the finish line. Sixteen years after she lost vision in her right eye, which she says she viewed as "a death sentence" at the time,  More>>

      Legoland Florida hotel to open in spring; built for kids

      LEGOLAND Florida photo LEGOLAND Florida photo
      Updated:

      Legoland Florida Hotel will welcome its first guests a month earlier than previously expected.During an announcement Thursday, Legoland executives announced May 15 as the revised opening date.  More>>

      3 rhinos escape from safari zoo, return safely Video included

      Updated:

      Three rhinoceroses escaped from their site at a safari zoo in Israel this week, NBC reported.  More>>

      VIRAL VIDEO: Bossy 4-year-old girl feeds 6 pit bull dogs

      Little Girl Controls Pit Bull Dogs | Future Dog Trainer, Jukin Video on YouTube Little Girl Controls Pit Bull Dogs | Future Dog Trainer, Jukin Video on YouTube
      Updated:

      A video of a very authoritative 4-year-old girl feeding six very obedient pit pulls in the middle of a kitchen has gone viral on the web and is prompting a heated debate about the pit bull breed.
      More>>

      8 fun things to do in Tampa Bay this weekend | January 17-18 Video included

      Updated:

      See 8 fun things happening this weekend in Tampa Bay!
      More>>

      'Birdman,' 'Budapest' top Oscar nominations with 9 nods each

      Updated:

      Two extravagant comedies, "Birdman" and "The Grand Budapest Hotel," tied for the most Oscar nominations Thursday morning with nine nods each, including best picture. More>>

      Out and About
      Powered by WorldNow

      200 South Parker Street, Tampa, FL 33606

      Telephone: 813.228.8888
      Fax: 813.225.2770
      Email: news@wfla.com

      Can???t find something?
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      All content © Copyright 2000 - 2015 Media General Communications Holdings, LLC. A Media General Company.