If you missed Paul Worrilow’s 19-tackle performance against Carolina last week, well, the undrafted rookie put on a repeat performance — finishing with 19 tackles for the second straight game — as one of the few bright spots in Sunday’s 33-10 loss to Seattle.
Worrilow again downplayed the accomplishment, which ranks tied for first in Falcons single-game tackling performances since 1994 with Curtis Lofton in 2009 and himself with last week’s performance.
But the Delaware product credits his improved play to seeing the game a little better now that he has a few NFL games under his belt.
“I’m learning a lot,” Worrilow said after the game. “In my first two starts, I was seeing things for the first time, but I’m doing a better job of my pre-snap anticipation, seeing the whole field a lot better, not (having so much) tunnel vision.”
In his first seven games as a professional football player, the undrafted rookie netted 17 total tackles. He reached that mark early in the fourth quarter Sunday. In fact, he started the first two defensive plays of the game with two tackles and had seven by the end of the first quarter. He now has 55 on the season with 38 coming in the past two games.
Worrilow said the game is starting to slow down for him, which could bode well for a player who looks to take the game head-on with full speed in the first place. He said the preparation aspect of the game is getting easier for him because things are starting to carry over from week to week. That’s allowed him to learn from his mistakes and correct the issues when he sees them a second time.
He’s had an impact, no doubt, on a defense that has otherwise had a difficult time finding consistency this season. The Falcons gave up a few more explosive plays against Seattle on Sunday, including a 37-yard Marshawn Lynch run and a flea-flicker touchdown that Worrilow said took the air out of the defense in the first half.
The Seahawks finished with 490 yards of total offense Sunday and Worrilow isn’t about to rest on two straight 19-tackle performances. He recognizes that he has to strive to be better, just like his teammates.
“You look at yourself in the mirror. Everybody looks at themselves. I might be a rookie but I’m still a football player. Nobody loves to lose,” Worrilow said. “Everybody wants to be the best they physically, possibly can be out on the field. It’s going to be a gut-check that everybody elevate their game. It’s no one individual’s fault. Football’s a collective effort.”
Here are the top 10 single-game tackle performances for the Falcons since 1994:
|T1||2013 (vs. Panthers)||Paul Worrilow||19|
|T1||2013 (vs. Seattle)||Paul Worrilow||19|