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NFL: Atlanta 31, Carolina 10

Jan. 2, 2011 at 5:09 PM   |   Comments

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ATLANTA, Jan. 2 (UPI) -- Matt Ryan's two touchdown passes helped the Atlanta Falcons clinch the NFC South and the top conference seed Sunday with an emphatic 31-10 win over Carolina.

Ryan went 22-of-32 through the air for 236 yards and improved his home record as a starter to 20-2 for the Falcons (13-3), who took their first NFC South title since 2004.

Atlanta also got 67 yards and a score from Michael Turner and Roddy White grabbed six passes for 62 yards, adding a touchdown for the Falcons, who finished with their best record since going 14-2 in 1998 -- the year the franchise made its only Super Bowl appearance.

Tony Gonzalez hauled down six passes for 53 yards and a score in the victory.

The Panthers (2-14), meanwhile, lost in their last game under fired head Coach John Fox.

Fox took Carolina to two NFC Championship games and one Super Bowl while compiling a 73-71 regular-season record.

© 2011 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
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