Matt Ryan is a hot button topic amongst Atlanta Falcons fans. Some feel he’s still a Pro-Bowl level quarterback while some feel he’s the reason the Falcons haven’t won more games including the Super Bowl in his 13 year career.
The truth is probably somewhere in between, but the 36 year old quarterback isn’t getting any younger. When the Falcons passed (no pun intended) on a chance to get his successor in Justin Fields, it put more of a target on his back for the 2021 season.
Pro Football Focus (PFF) is backing Matt Ryan to bounce back closer to his 2018 form when he had a career high 4,924 yards and 35 touchdowns against only seven interceptions.
PFF ranked all of the presumed starting quarterbacks and the four-time All-Pro and 2016 NFL MVP came in at No. 9.
9. MATT RYAN, ATLANTA FALCONS
Matt Ryan teaming up with new head coach Arthur Smith could be a good look. The play-action pass game could elevate Ryan’s performance back to the days when he was with Kyle Shanahan or at least back to consistent play on a week-to-week basis.
The addition of Kyle Pitts will be a matchup nightmare for defenses, too. Ryan is a top-10 quarterback, and the Falcons’ 2021 schedule could allow them to get back to competing sooner than some may think. It will be up to Ryan to be as productive as Ryan Tannehill was in this offense, if not more.
Tannehill had 3,819 yards and 33 touchdowns against seven interceptions last season. His two years with Tennessee saw him with a 55/13 TD to INT ratio. His attempts were down compared to his early days with Miami, but his efficiency was way up.
The eight year pro saw career highs in yards per completion and career lows in interceptions while playing under Smith.
By passing on a quarterback in the draft and going for Kyle Pitts, the Falcons are banking on getting several more years of high production from Matt Ryan.
Smith’s track record with Tannehill shows that should be a safe bet.