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Quarterbacking 101 with Matt Ryan and Kyle Shanahan | NFL 360
Quarterbacking 101 with Matt Ryan and Kyle Shanahan | NFL 360
Published: 2017/01/01
Channel: NFL Network
#77 Matt Ryan (QB, Falcons) | Top 100 Players of 2015
#77 Matt Ryan (QB, Falcons) | Top 100 Players of 2015
Published: 2015/05/21
Channel: NFL
Every Matt Ryan TD from his MVP Season | NFL
Every Matt Ryan TD from his MVP Season | NFL
Published: 2017/05/17
Channel: NFL
NFL MVP Award | 2017 NFL Honors
NFL MVP Award | 2017 NFL Honors
Published: 2017/02/05
Channel: NFL
Matt Ryan’s Top 10 Plays of the 2016 Season | Atlanta Falcons | NFL Highlights
Matt Ryan’s Top 10 Plays of the 2016 Season | Atlanta Falcons | NFL Highlights
Published: 2017/02/08
Channel: NFL
Matt Ryan Delivers for 392 Yards & 5 TDs! | Packers vs. Falcons | NFC Championship Player Highlights
Matt Ryan Delivers for 392 Yards & 5 TDs! | Packers vs. Falcons | NFC Championship Player Highlights
Published: 2017/01/23
Channel: NFL
Football: Matt Ryan Jersey Retirement Ceremony
Football: Matt Ryan Jersey Retirement Ceremony
Published: 2016/11/19
Channel: Boston College Athletics
Mic
Mic'd Up Matt Ryan Leads Falcons to Big OT Win | Sound FX (Week 5) | NFL Films
Published: 2015/10/15
Channel: NFL
Matt Ryan
Matt Ryan's Top 5 Plays at Boston College
Published: 2014/09/11
Channel: ACC Digital Network
Mic
Mic'd Up: QB Matt Ryan
Published: 2014/09/24
Channel: Atlanta Falcons
Matt Ryan 2016-17 Highlights || MattVP
Matt Ryan 2016-17 Highlights || MattVP
Published: 2017/01/25
Channel: TorrisATL2
Matt Ryan: Falcons Super Bowl QB Became "Matty Ice" at Boston College
Matt Ryan: Falcons Super Bowl QB Became "Matty Ice" at Boston College
Published: 2017/01/23
Channel: ACC Digital Network
Matt Ryan interview with Erin Andrews before NFC Title Game | FOX NFL SUNDAY
Matt Ryan interview with Erin Andrews before NFC Title Game | FOX NFL SUNDAY
Published: 2017/01/22
Channel: FOX Sports
Matt Ryan Boston College (Highlights To The Dream)
Matt Ryan Boston College (Highlights To The Dream)
Published: 2017/02/03
Channel: Shawn Haines
Mic’d Up: QB Matt Ryan
Mic’d Up: QB Matt Ryan
Published: 2016/12/19
Channel: Atlanta Falcons
Matt Ryan Out Duels Aaron Rodgers (NFC Championship) | NFL Turning Point
Matt Ryan Out Duels Aaron Rodgers (NFC Championship) | NFL Turning Point
Published: 2017/01/27
Channel: NFL Films
Top 10 Falcons Plays of 2015 | #TopTenTuesdays | NFL
Top 10 Falcons Plays of 2015 | #TopTenTuesdays | NFL
Published: 2016/08/02
Channel: NFL
The Year of Matt Ryan
The Year of Matt Ryan
Published: 2017/01/12
Channel: Atlanta Falcons
Mic’d Up: Matt Ryan
Mic’d Up: Matt Ryan
Published: 2015/09/17
Channel: Atlanta Falcons
Falcons QB Matt Ryan film breakdown vs Carolina Panthers week 4 2016
Falcons QB Matt Ryan film breakdown vs Carolina Panthers week 4 2016
Published: 2016/10/08
Channel: Rover Sports
11 reasons Matt Ryan is a lock for NFL MVP
11 reasons Matt Ryan is a lock for NFL MVP
Published: 2017/02/04
Channel: WSB-TV
How to Stop Tom Brady & Matt Ryan | Move the Sticks | Super Bowl LI Preview | NFL
How to Stop Tom Brady & Matt Ryan | Move the Sticks | Super Bowl LI Preview | NFL
Published: 2017/02/01
Channel: NFL
Kyle Shanahan and Matt Ryan
Kyle Shanahan and Matt Ryan's 99 yd drive vs Seahawks (NFL Breakdowns Ep 43)
Published: 2017/02/03
Channel: Samuel Gold
Tom Brady or Matt Ryan: Who has the Better Supporting Cast? | ATN | Super Bowl LI Preview | NFL
Tom Brady or Matt Ryan: Who has the Better Supporting Cast? | ATN | Super Bowl LI Preview | NFL
Published: 2017/01/26
Channel: NFL
#10: Matt Ryan (QB, Falcons) | Top 100 Players of 2017 | NFL
#10: Matt Ryan (QB, Falcons) | Top 100 Players of 2017 | NFL
Published: 2017/06/27
Channel: NFL
Matt Ryan- ll MVP Caliber ll  Atlanta Falcons Highlights
Matt Ryan- ll MVP Caliber ll Atlanta Falcons Highlights
Published: 2016/11/24
Channel: Santana Productions
Eric Berry Picks Off Matt Ryan & Takes it to the House! | Chiefs vs. Falcons | NFL
Eric Berry Picks Off Matt Ryan & Takes it to the House! | Chiefs vs. Falcons | NFL
Published: 2016/12/04
Channel: NFL
Matt Ryan Leads Falcons on 85-Yard TD Drive & the 2-PT Conversion | Falcons vs. Raiders | NFL
Matt Ryan Leads Falcons on 85-Yard TD Drive & the 2-PT Conversion | Falcons vs. Raiders | NFL
Published: 2016/09/18
Channel: NFL
Aaron Rodgers & Matt Ryan Throw for 5 TDs in the First Half! | Packers vs. Falcons | NFL
Aaron Rodgers & Matt Ryan Throw for 5 TDs in the First Half! | Packers vs. Falcons | NFL
Published: 2016/10/30
Channel: NFL
Matt Ryan On Beating The Panthers,
Matt Ryan On Beating The Panthers, 'You Need To Play A Perfect Game' | NFL Now Live
Published: 2016/02/03
Channel: NFL
NFL Playoffs: Matt Ryan, Falcons Crush Seahawks
NFL Playoffs: Matt Ryan, Falcons Crush Seahawks
Published: 2017/01/15
Channel: NESN
Matt Ryan:
Matt Ryan: 'We Were Opportunistic'
Published: 2016/12/12
Channel: Atlanta Falcons
Matt Ryan First NFL Pass TD!
Matt Ryan First NFL Pass TD!
Published: 2017/01/14
Channel: full snags
Pro Football Hall of Famer Troy Aikman on Matt Ryan
Pro Football Hall of Famer Troy Aikman on Matt Ryan's Approach to Super Bowl - 2/3/17
Published: 2017/02/03
Channel: The Rich Eisen Show
Matt Ryan 2012 Deep Passes
Matt Ryan 2012 Deep Passes
Published: 2013/01/08
Channel: 1Dynasty7
Falcons Football Players - 2013 Friday Night Lights, QB Matt Ryan
Falcons Football Players - 2013 Friday Night Lights, QB Matt Ryan
Published: 2013/08/06
Channel: RockTheOnlyOne
Matt Ryan
Matt Ryan's Run Blocking FAIL! | Falcons vs. Saints | NFL
Published: 2016/09/27
Channel: NFL
Matt Ryan
Matt Ryan's Laser TD Pass to Mohamed Sanu! | Falcons vs. Seahawks | NFL
Published: 2016/10/16
Channel: NFL
Happy 31st Birthday, Matt Ryan!
Happy 31st Birthday, Matt Ryan!
Published: 2016/05/17
Channel: Atlanta Falcons
Freeman on Matt Ryan:
Freeman on Matt Ryan: 'The Man on Fire'
Published: 2016/11/09
Channel: Atlanta Falcons
Falcons Football Scrimmage - 2013 Friday Night Lights, QB Matt Ryan
Falcons Football Scrimmage - 2013 Friday Night Lights, QB Matt Ryan
Published: 2013/08/09
Channel: RockTheOnlyOne
Matt Ryan Praises Tom Brady
Matt Ryan Praises Tom Brady's Consistency
Published: 2017/01/31
Channel: NESN
Throwback Thursday: Face of the Franchise
Throwback Thursday: Face of the Franchise
Published: 2015/09/10
Channel: Atlanta Falcons
Deion Sanders - Not Matt Ryan
Deion Sanders - Not Matt Ryan's fault that Falcons lost | Super Bowl LI
Published: 2017/02/06
Channel: NFL World
Matt Ryan Final Drive vs Seahawks
Matt Ryan Final Drive vs Seahawks
Published: 2013/01/15
Channel: SANFRANFANAD
Aaron Rodgers vs Matt Ryan 2017 NFC Championship
Aaron Rodgers vs Matt Ryan 2017 NFC Championship
Published: 2017/01/22
Channel: Football
NFL Monday QB: Aaron Rodgers vs. Matt Ryan
NFL Monday QB: Aaron Rodgers vs. Matt Ryan
Published: 2017/01/24
Channel: CBS Sports
Gottlieb: Phil Simms talks Matt Ryan and Tom Brady
Gottlieb: Phil Simms talks Matt Ryan and Tom Brady
Published: 2017/01/31
Channel: CBS Sports
Channel 2
Channel 2's Zach Klein: 1-on-1 with Matt Ryan
Published: 2016/09/27
Channel: WSB-TV
Matt Ryan, Falcons feeling good 3 days out from Super Bowl
Matt Ryan, Falcons feeling good 3 days out from Super Bowl
Published: 2017/02/03
Channel: FOX 5 Atlanta
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WIKIPEDIA ARTICLE

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Matt Ryan
refer to caption
Ryan in 2016
No. 2 Atlanta Falcons
Position: Quarterback
Personal information
Date of birth: (1985-05-17) May 17, 1985 (age 32)
Place of birth: Exton, Pennsylvania
Height: 6 ft 4 in (1.93 m)
Weight: 217 lb (98 kg)
Career information
High school: Philadelphia (PA) Penn Charter
College: Boston College
NFL Draft: 2008 / Round: 1 / Pick: 3
Career history
Roster status: Active
Career highlights and awards
Career NFL statistics as of Week 17, 2016
Passing attempts: 5,064
Passing completions: 3,288
Percentage: 64.9
TDINT: 240–114
Passing yards: 37,701
Passer rating: 93.6
Player stats at NFL.com

Matthew Thomas Ryan (born May 17, 1985), nicknamed "Matty Ice", is an American football quarterback for the Atlanta Falcons of the National Football League (NFL). After playing college football for Boston College, Ryan was drafted by the Falcons with the third overall pick in the first round of the 2008 NFL Draft.

Ryan was Boston College's starting quarterback from 2005 to 2007, leading them to three bowl victories and a 25–7 record in 32 starts. He threw for 200 or more yards 15 times and is third all time in school history in passing yards and in pass completions. He earned MVP of the game honors at the 2005 MPC Computers Bowl.[1]

In 2007, Ryan led his team to an ACC Atlantic Division championship and was named ACC Player of the Year.[2] During his rookie year, Ryan started all 16 games for the Falcons and led them to the playoffs with an 11–5 season record. He earned honors as the NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year. In 2016, Ryan was the NFL's Most Valuable Player and led the Falcons to Super Bowl LI.

Background[edit]

Ryan, the third of four siblings, was born to Bernice and Michael Ryan, both Roman Catholics of Irish descent.[3] One of Ryan's uncles, John Loughery, played quarterback at Boston College from 1979-82.[4]

High school career[edit]

Ryan attended the William Penn Charter School,[5] in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, where he was a three-year starter and earned All-East honors from Larunt Lemming Prep Football Report. He captured All-Southeastern Pennsylvania accolades as a senior quarterback in addition to receiving All-City first-team honors in 2002 and second-team recognition in 2001. A three-time All-League selection, he threw for more than 1,300 yards with 9 touchdowns as a senior, finishing his career by completing more than 52 percent of his pass attempts during all three seasons at the helm. Ryan played football, basketball and baseball while in high school and was named captain of all three teams his senior year. He was quarterback of the football team in 2002, played small forward on the basketball team, and was a pitcher and a shortstop on the baseball team.[6]

Ryan says he was "mildly" recruited and began receiving scholarship offers as a sophomore. Some of the schools that offered him an athletic scholarship were Purdue, Georgia Tech, Temple, and Connecticut. After attending his recruiting visit with Boston College during his junior year, it was announced he gave them his verbal commitment on August 14, 2002. His choices had come down to Iowa or Boston College. Ryan was looking for a university close to home and had a strong and competitive football program with a major emphasis on academics.[7]

College career[edit]

Ryan began attending Boston College in 2003 and redshirted his first year with the team. Before the 2004 season, he was named the starting quarterback for Boston College due to an injury to Quinton Porter. He made his collegiate debut on October 2, 2004 against the UMass Minutemen and completed two of three passes for 16 yards. He would not complete his first touchdown until November 20, 2004 against Temple, after throwing a 32-yard touchdown pass to Larry Lester. Replacing the injured Paul Peterson, he completed nine of 15 passes for 121 yards. He made his first collegiate start on November 27, 2004 in the final game of that season, completing 24 of 51 passes for 200 yards against Syracuse. He also played against North Carolina in the Continental Tire Bowl. He completed one of his two passes for 13 yards. Matt was also quite proficient in the classroom, and was awarded the 2004 Freshman Male Scholar-Athlete award that same year.[8] Ryan launched a website during his senior year at Boston College called Mattyice.com, where fans and media have 24-hour access to video highlights, updated biographical information, statistics and other information about him.[9] In 2016, Boston College retired his jersey.[10]

2005 season[edit]

At the beginning of the 2005 season, Ryan was named the second-string quarterback behind Quinton Porter. Porter had some success at the beginning of the year, including winning Atlantic Coast Conference player of the week for his performance in Boston College's 28–17 win over Virginia. After a 30–10 loss to third-ranked Virginia Tech, coach Tom O'Brien finally went to Ryan for good in the 4th quarter of the next game against North Carolina. In ten games (five starts), he completed 121 of 195 passes for 1,514 yards. He had eight touchdowns and five interceptions. He also rushed for five touchdowns and 94 yards. He started his first bowl game in the MPC Computers Bowl versus Boise State. He completed 19 of 36 passes for 256 yards and a career-best three touchdowns.[6]

2006 season[edit]

Ryan started 11 of 12 games. He completed 254 of 398 passes for 2,700 yards, 17 touchdowns and 8 interceptions. He also ran for four touchdowns. He was All-ACC first-team and led the ACC in total offense (242.2 yards per game) and in passing yards (245.5 yards per game). He was named ACC Offensive Back of the week 3 times. He set career highs in completions (32 vs. Central Michigan) and passing yards (356 vs. Brigham Young). He led the team to a 9–3 record including double overtime wins versus Clemson and Brigham Young. He led the Eagles to a close 25–24 victory on December 26, 2006 in the Meineke Car Care Bowl against Navy in Charlotte, North Carolina. In the season opener against Central Michigan, Ryan sprained his ankle. Against Virginia Tech, Ryan broke his foot on the same leg. Despite these injuries, Ryan only missed one game (against Buffalo).[11] His 57 pass attempts in the 2006 Wake Forest game tied Shawn Halloran's performance against Syracuse Orange in 1985 and Frank Harris's performance against Army in 1968 for the BC record his 40 pass completions in the 2006 Wake Forest game broke the old school record of 37 by Frank Harris in the 1968 Army clash.

2007 season[edit]

Ryan and the Boston College Eagles line up on offense in the 2007 ACC Championship game
External image
Ryan on the Cover of NCAA Football 09

Before the season started, Ryan was named to the preseason All-ACC team. Against Wake Forest, he completed 32 of 52 passes for 408 yards and 5 touchdowns. Boston College also hired a new coach: Jeff Jagodzinski, a longtime NFL assistant.[12] He continued his hot streak versus Georgia Tech, going 30–44 with one touchdown and passing for a career-high 435 yards against the staunch Tech defense en route to a convincing 24–10 road victory. After this game, Ryan was suggested as a potential Heisman Trophy contender. Battling Virginia Tech through bad weather in Blacksburg, Virginia, Ryan led an amazing comeback for the Boston College Eagles, passing for two touchdowns with less than 3 minutes to play on October 25, 2007, including the game-winner with 11 seconds left to Andre Callender.[13][14] However, Matt Ryan's chances to win the Heisman fell sharply after he threw three interceptions in a 27–17 loss to Florida State, an unranked team that had six wins and three losses. However, with a strong performance against Clemson[15] his chances were raised substantially. Despite 2 consecutive ACC losses, Ryan and the Eagles found themselves with a trip to the conference championship on the line. Down 10–3 in the third quarter, he led the offense on a game-tying drive, hitting on key passes to Rich Gunnell, Andre Callender and Ryan Purvis, landing the Eagles at the Clemson 2 early in the fourth. James McCluskey finished the job from there, running it in to even the score at 10-apiece. Shortly thereafter, a Clemson turnover resulted in a BC field goal and a 13–10 lead for the maroon and gold . On November 24, against ACC rival Miami,[16] Ryan surpassed Doug Flutie for the most passing touchdowns in a single season by an Eagle QB with 28 TDs, ultimately ending the season with 31. Despite these records, he struggled with throwing interceptions throughout the year, and finished with 19 (2nd most among college quarterbacks). His five touchdown passes in the 2007 Wake Forest game are one shy of the school record of six, held by Doug Flutie in 1984 vs North Carolina. For the maroon and gold, it was their first 10-win regular season since 1940 and the first time they had achieved back-to-back 10-overall-win seasons in program history. He led the Eagles to extend the nation's longest bowl winning streak to eight with a 24–21 victory over Michigan State Spartans in the Champs Sports Bowl on December 28, Ryan threw three touchdown passes, two to Rich Gunnell and one to Jon Loyte .[17] Matt Ryan was awarded the 2007 Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award, given annually in the United States to the nation's most outstanding college football senior quarterback, the other finalists for the 2007 award were Hawaii's Colt Brennan, Louisville's Brian Brohm, Oregon's Dennis Dixon and Kentucky's Andre Woodson (all of whom were drafted at the 2008 NFL Draft) He was selected to play in the 2008 Senior Bowl. He also won the 2007 Manning Award[18] awarded to the nation's top quarterback, beating out eventual Heisman winner Tim Tebow and eight other finalists for this year's award: Erik Ainge (Tennessee), Sam Bradford (Oklahoma), Colt Brennan (Hawai'i), Chase Daniel (Missouri), Dennis Dixon (Oregon), Graham Harrell (Texas Tech), Pat White (West Virginia), and Andre' Woodson (Kentucky). He also he was named "Eagle of the Year" alongside BC's first ever individual champion Kasey Hill, in November, he was asked to talk at the Boston College Multi-Cultural Thanksgiving celebration where he spoke of family, integrity and devotion. He is featured as the cover athlete for the PS3 version of NCAA Football 09.[19]

Awards and honors[edit]

Statistics[edit]

Year Team Passing Rushing
Cmp Att Pct Yds Y/A TD Int Rtg Att Yds Avg TD
2004 Boston College 35 71 49.3% 350 4.9 2 3 91.5 12 -3 -0.3 0
2005 Boston College 121 195 62.1% 1,514 7.8 8 5 135.7 37 94 2.5 5
2006 Boston College 263 427 61.6% 2,942 6.9 15 10 126.4 51 -35 -0.7 4
2007 Boston College 388 654 59.3% 4,507 6.9 31 19 127.0 68 2 0.0 2
Career 807 1,347 59.9% 9,313 6.9 56 37 126.2 168 58 0.3 11

Source:[20]

Professional career[edit]

External images
Matt Ryan at the 2008 Boston College Pro Day
Ryan introduced as the 3rd Overall pick of the 2008 NFL Draft
Pre-draft measureables
Wt 40 yd Vert BP Wonderlic
*224 lb *4.86s *24 N/A *32
(* represents NFL Combine[21])

Ryan[22] scored a 32 on the Wonderlic exam, tying Louisville's Brian Brohm for the highest score by a quarterback in the 2008 Draft class.[23][24]

He was drafted third overall by the Atlanta Falcons in the 2008 NFL Draft[25][26][27] He was the second first-round pick of the draft to sign when he agreed to a six-year, $72 million contract on May 20, 2008; the contract contained $34.75 million in guaranteed money.[28] The contract made Ryan the fourth highest paid quarterback in the NFL behind Peyton Manning, Ben Roethlisberger, and Carson Palmer, despite never having played a professional game.[29] This helped fuel the discussion regarding whether salaries for first-round draftees in the NFL were too high.[30] In addition, Ryan has signed endorsement deals with Nike[31] and AirTran.[32]

2008 season[edit]

Ryan in 2008.

On August 24, Ryan was named the starting quarterback for the September 7 regular season opener against the Detroit Lions.[33][34] Ryan became the first rookie quarterback to start a season for the Falcons since Michael Vick in 2001. In the game, Ryan completed his first NFL pass for a 62-yard touchdown to Michael Jenkins,[35] becoming the first quarterback to throw a touchdown on his first career NFL pass since Michael Bishop of the New England Patriots in 2000. Ryan was sacked for the first time by Lions defensive player Dewayne White in his first win. The second game of the season against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers marked Ryan's first interception by rookie cornerback Aqib Talib and also by Sabby Piscitelli.

In week 3 against the Kansas City Chiefs, he completed the then-longest touchdown pass in his career for 70 yards to Roddy White. The 70-yard touchdown pass to White was the longest pass completion for the Falcons since December 23, 2007, when Chris Redman threw a 74-yard touchdown pass. In the same game Ryan completed passes to 6 different players. The following week, he threw for 194 yards and two TDs against the Green Bay Packers. His touchdown passes went to Roddy White and tight end Justin Peelle. The following week against the Chicago Bears Ryan led the Falcons to a comeback win. With 6 seconds left he completed a 26-yard strike to Michael Jenkins that set Jason Elam up for the game-winning field goal as time expired. Ryan finished the game 22-of-30 for a then career-high 301 passing yards. He also had a key fourth-quarter touchdown pass to Roddy White. On Atlanta's first offensive drive, Ryan completed all five of his pass attempts for 57 yards en route to a Falcons field goal and a 3–0 lead. Ryan was named Diet Pepsi Rookie of the week for his performance.[36]

Ryan created an activity named "Folleyball" for NFL Play 60 at NFL Rush.com, published in October of that year.[37]

External video
Matt Ryan's 1st NFL pass, and touchdown
Ryan takes a snap against the Raiders on November 2.

On October 30, Ryan was honored as the NFC Rookie of the Month for October following an impressive string of games in which he led the Falcons to a 2–1 record. Ryan became the first player in Atlanta Falcons franchise history to be awarded this honor[38][39] In week 8 against the Oakland Raiders, Ryan finished with the highest completion percentage of his career (77.3). He threw for 220 yards and posted a quarterback rating of 138.4. He also completed passes to eight different receivers and the game was his third multiple touchdown game (Green Bay, Philadelphia).[40] His first half passing yardage, completion percentage (81.3) and passer rating (154.2) are all career highs for a half and his two touchdowns tie a first half high, Ryan’s final completion percentage of 77.3 is a career-high along with his passer rating of 138.4. He was named NFC Offensive Player of the Week following his performance against the Raiders.[41][42][43] He scored his first rushing TD against the New Orleans Saints on December 7 with a 12-yard touchdown scramble, Ryan also achieved 3000+ passing yards in the 2008 season being only the 2nd rookie to do so. Peyton Manning was the first.[44]

Ryan became the first Falcons rookie quarterback in franchise history to throw for over 3,000 yards in a season after finishing with 206 yards against Tampa Bay. Ryan’s passing total also makes him only the 10th quarterback in club annals to hit the 3,000-yard mark and the first since 1998 when Chris Chandler threw 3,154.[45] It was also his first overtime win as a starter. He was named the Diet Pepsi NFL Rookie of the Week for games played after his performance by the second time in his career.[46][47] Ryan finished second amongst rookies in fan Pro Bowl voting (416,468 votes), behind only Titans running back Chris Johnson.[48] Ryan threw for a season-low 134 yards Week 16 against Minnesota Vikings, ending a streak of nine straight games with at least 200 yards passing, he finished 13-of-24 passing, throwing an 8-yard touchdown passes to Jerious Norwood in the second quarter; however, with this win Ryan led the Falcons to their first playoff berth since 2004.[49]

He finished the season with 3,440 passing yards, 17 touchdowns (one rushing), and 11 interceptions. He and fellow rookie Joe Flacco were the first rookie quarterbacks to lead their teams to the playoffs after starting all 16 games of the season. He is one of twelve rookie quarterbacks to throw for over 3,000 yards in their rookie season. On December 31, Ryan was named the AP NFL Rookie of the Year.[50][51]

Ryan made his first playoff start against the Arizona Cardinals on January 3, 2009. He was 15 years younger than opposing quarterback Kurt Warner, the third largest age discrepancy between playoff quarterbacks. His first attempted playoff pass was an interception. Ryan completed 26 of 40 passing attempts for 199 yards and 2 touchdowns but was intercepted twice. He threw his first TD in a playoff contest to Justin Peelle.[52] Atlanta lost, 30–24.[52] Falcons Head Coach Mike Smith and Ryan became the first rookie head coach and rookie quarterback to coach and compete in a playoff game since the Cleveland Rams accomplished the feat in 1945 (the feat was repeated the next day when Ravens Joe Flacco and John Harbaugh did so.)[52] During the game, Ryan set an NFL playoff rookie record with 26 completions in a single postseason game.[52]

2009 season[edit]

Ryan being introduced before the Falcons' 2009 regular season opener on September 13.

Ryan was voted by his teammates as Offensive Captain alongside Todd McClure at the end of the 2008 Season. He was first on the depth chart and was the Falcons starting quarterback for the second consecutive season.[citation needed]

In 2009, Ryan started off the season fast as he threw for 229 yards and 2 touchdowns with no interceptions as he led the Falcons to a 19–7 win against the Miami Dolphins in the 2009 NFL season opener. In Week 2, Ryan led the Falcons past the Carolina Panthers. Ryan had a career high in touchdown passes (3), completion percentage (78%) and touchdown passes in a half (3). He finished the game 21–28 with 220 yards, 3 touchdowns and a pick. In week 3, Ryan and the Falcons lost to the New England Patriots. Ryan completed 17-28 for 199 yards with no touchdowns or interceptions.

In Week 5 game against the San Francisco 49ers, he completed 15 of 21 passes for 258 yards in the first half, setting a new career-high for the first half of play.[53] Ryan finished the game having completed 22 of 32 passes for 329 yards and two touchdowns for a 110.0 passer rating. Ryan tossed a 31-yard strike to Roddy White and he connected to White again in the second quarter with a 90-yard touchdown.[54] The pass and reception for Ryan and White set new career highs. The pass and reception also mark the third longest in franchise history and the longest pass play since 2001.[53] The game was his third-career 300-yard passing outing as the second-year quarterback set a new career-high in total passing yards in a single game.[53]

In Weeks 6 through 9, Ryan generally struggled, throwing more interceptions (8) than touchdowns (6), was sacked 10 times, and had an average passing rating of 65.5. Still, he led the Falcons to two victories in the four games, in part thanks to Michael Turner returning to the form of 2008.

In Week 12, Matt Ryan suffered a turf toe injury during the game against Tampa Bay. Chris Redman stepped in and managed to win the game by connecting to Roddy White for a touchdown in the 4th quarter. Following this victory, however, the effect of Ryan's absence was compounded by injury to starting running back Michael Turner, and the Falcons suffered losses to both Philadelphia and New Orleans in Weeks 13 and 14. In Week 15, Ryan returned, despite not yet having fully recovered from his injury, and led Atlanta to a 10–7 upset win against the New York Jets.

In Week 16, the Falcons defeated the Buffalo Bills in a 31–3 win. Matt Ryan threw for 250 yards with three touchdowns, two of them to Roddy White. In the last game of the season, the Falcons defeated the Bucs 20-10.

With a record of 9–7, the Atlanta Falcons attained back to back winning seasons for the first time in franchise history.[55]

Ryan finished the season throwing for 2,916 yards with 22 touchdowns, 14 interceptions, and a quarterback rating of 80.9. Ryan also rushed for 49 yards and one touchdown.

2010 season[edit]

In the 2010 season, Ryan led the Falcons to an NFC best 13–3 record, second in the NFL behind the 14–2 New England Patriots. He set career highs in touchdowns (28), completion percentage (62.5), and yards (3,705) while tossing 9 interceptions. Ryan set the single season franchise records, as well as career highs, in attempts (571), completions (357), and wins in a season (13).

He also led the NFL in fourth quarter comebacks for a quarterback in the 2010 season, with six. In the divisional round of the 2010–11 NFL playoffs, the Falcons were defeated by the eventual Super Bowl champions, Green Bay Packers with the score 48–21.

Ryan was invited to the 2011 Pro Bowl, for the first time of his career. He threw two touchdowns in the Pro Bowl, one to Tony Gonzalez and the other to Larry Fitzgerald.

2011 season[edit]

In the 2011 season, Ryan led the Falcons to a 10–6 record, passing for 4,177 yards, 29 touchdowns, and 12 interceptions. However, they were defeated by the New York Giants in the wild card round by a score of 24–2.

2012 season[edit]

In 2012, Ryan led the Falcons to their franchise best start of the season, starting 8–0. Ryan set personal records in completions (422), percentage (68.6), yards (4,719), and touchdowns (32). The Falcons finished the season 13–3, with the first seed in the NFC. Ryan, who was 0–3 in the postseason coming into the playoffs, won his first postseason game in the NFC Divisional Round against the Seattle Seahawks, with Ryan orchestrating the final scoring drive that led to Matt Bryant's game-winning field goal. Ryan finished with 250 passing yards, 68.6% completion percentage, 3 touchdowns, and 2 interceptions. In the NFC Championship Game against the San Francisco 49ers, Ryan threw for 396 yards and three touchdowns, but also committed two turnovers in crucial portions of the game, and later sprained the AC joint to his non-throwing shoulder as the Falcons lost 28–24. He did not require surgical procedure to repair his shoulder and would have been able to play in the Super Bowl if the Falcons had advanced.

2013 season[edit]

On July 25, 2013, Ryan agreed to a five-year contract extension worth $103.75 million with the Falcons.[56] On December 30, Ryan surpassed Steve Bartkowski for the all-time franchise leader in passing yards. The Falcons had a down year, where they went only 4–12, due to multiple injuries and losing key players on both sides of the ball.[57]

2014 season[edit]

Ryan vs. the Ravens in 2014.

Ryan led the Falcons to a 6–10 record in 2014. He threw for 4,694 yards, 28 touchdowns, and 14 interceptions, and had a quarterback rating of 93.9; the second highest of his career. The Falcons missed the playoffs a second year in a row after losing to their divisional rivals, Carolina Panthers, in Week 17.

2015 season[edit]

Ryan in 2015.

Ryan led the Falcons to a 8–8 record in 2015, good for second in the NFC South, but not enough for the playoffs. Ryan finished with 21 touchdown passes, the second lowest of his career, as well as 16 interceptions, the second highest of his career. Ryan also fumbled a career high 12 times, losing 5 of them, also a career high.

2016 season[edit]

In Week 4 of the 2016 season, Ryan threw for a team-record 503 yards and four touchdowns while teammate Julio Jones caught 12 passes for a team-record 300 yards and a touchdown in a win over the Carolina Panthers.[58] Ryan and Jones were the first quarterback-receiver duo in NFL history to combine for at least 500 passing yards and 300 receiving yards in the same game.[59] In October 2016, he set an NFL record for most consecutive games with at least 200 passing yards with 46 straight games.[60] Ryan improved greatly from the previous season. He threw for a career high 4,944 yards on just 373 completions and 534 attempts, second in the league, and a career high 38 touchdowns and a career low 7 interceptions, also second in the league. Ryan's 9.3 yards per attempt and 5.0 air yards per attempt ranked No. 1 among NFL quarterbacks in 2016.[61] He threw touchdown passes to 13 different receivers, an NFL record. He also threw a touchdown pass in all 16 games for the first time in his career and was the only quarterback to do so for the season. Ryan was selected to his fourth Pro Bowl and was named First-team All Pro.[62] Following the regular season, he was recognized as the NFL Most Valuable Player by the Pro Football Writers Association.[63] Ryan was named the NFL Offensive Player of the Year and the NFL Most Valuable Player for the 2016 season.[64][65]

As the number 2 seed in the NFC Playoffs, Ryan led the 11–5 Atlanta Falcons to a 36–20 victory over the number 3 seeded Seattle Seahawks in the Divisional Round. Ryan passed for over 300 yards and had 3 touchdowns.[66] In the NFC Championship game, Ryan led the Falcons to a 44–21 victory over the Green Bay Packers. Ryan threw for 392 yards for 4 touchdowns and no interceptions. He also ran for a fifth touchdown as the Falcons earned a trip to Super Bowl LI.[67] During the Super Bowl against the New England Patriots, Ryan finished with 284 passing yards, two touchdowns, and a lost fumble in a 28–34 overtime loss.[68]

NFL career statistics and accolades[edit]

Legend
Led the league
AP NFL MVP & OPOTY
Bold Career high

Regular season[edit]

General Passing Rushing
Season Team GP GS W–L Cmp Att Cmp% Yards Y/A Y/G TDs Ints Rtg Sk Att Yards Y/A Y/G TDs Fumbs
2008 Atlanta 16 16 11–5 265 434 61.1% 3,440 7.9 215.0 16 11 87.7 17 55 104 1.9 6.5 1 6
2009 Atlanta 14 14 9–5 263 451 58.3% 2,916 6.5 208.3 22 14 80.9 19 30 49 1.6 3.5 1 5
2010 Atlanta 16 16 13–3 357 571 62.5% 3,705 6.5 231.6 28 9 91.0 23 46 122 2.7 7.6 0 4
2011 Atlanta 16 16 10–6 347 566 61.3% 4,177 7.4 261.1 29 12 92.2 26 37 84 2.3 5.3 2 5
2012 Atlanta 16 16 13–3 422 615 68.6% 4,719 7.7 294.9 32 14 99.1 28 34 141 4.1 8.8 1 3
2013 Atlanta 16 16 4–12 439 651 67.4% 4,515 6.9 282.2 26 17 89.6 44 17 55 3.2 3.4 0 5
2014 Atlanta 16 16 6–10 415 628 66.1% 4,694 7.5 293.4 28 14 93.9 31 29 145 5.0 9.1 0 5
2015 Atlanta 16 16 8–8 407 614 66.3% 4,591 7.5 286.9 21 16 89.0 30 36 63 1.8 3.9 0 12
2016 Atlanta 16 16 11–5 373 534 69.9% 4,944 9.3 309.0 38 7 117.1 37 35 117 3.3 7.3 0 4
Career 142 142 85–57 3,288 5,064 64.9% 37,701 7.4 265.5 240 114 93.6 255 319 880 2.8 6.2 5 49

Playoffs[edit]

General Passing Rushing
Season Team GP GS W–L Cmp Att Cmp% Yards Y/A Y/G TDs Ints Rtg Sk Att Yards Y/A Y/G TDs Fumbs
2008 Atlanta 1 1 0–1 26 40 65.0% 199 5.0 199.0 2 2 72.8 3 4 6 1.5 6.0 0 1
2010 Atlanta 1 1 0–1 20 29 69.0% 186 6.4 186.0 1 2 69.0 5 1 0 0.0 0.0 0 1
2011 Atlanta 1 1 0–1 24 41 58.9% 199 4.9 199.0 0 0 71.1 2 3 3 1.0 3.0 0 0
2012 Atlanta 2 2 1–1 54 77 70.1% 646 8.4 323.0 6 3 105.2 1 3 9 3.0 4.5 0 1
2016 Atlanta 3 3 2–1 70 98 71.4% 1,014 10.3 338.0 9 0 135.3 8 6 20 3.3 6.7 1 1
Career 8 8 3–5 194 285 68.1% 2,244 7.9 280.5 18 7 102.4 19 17 38 2.2 4.8 1 4

Awards and honors[edit]

Falcons franchise records[edit]

Ryan with the Falcons in 2009.
  • Only Falcons quarterback to lead the team to an 8-0 start [74]
  • Most wins in a regular season by a starting quarterback: 13 (2010 and 2012)[75]
  • Most passing touchdowns in a single season: 38 (2016)[75]
  • Most passing yards in a single season: 4,944 (2016)[75]
  • Fewest interceptions in a regular season by starting quarterback — 7 (2016) (16 starts)[75]
  • Best career quarterback rating for starting quarterback: 93.6[75]
  • Most 4th quarter comeback wins in a single season: 5 (2010) (tied with Steve Bartkowski)[75]
  • Most career wins: 85
  • Most career pass attempts: 5,064
  • Most career pass completions: 3,288
  • Most career passing yards: 37,701
  • Most career passing touchdowns: 240

Personal life[edit]

Ryan is an avid golfer and has participated in such tournaments as the American Century Celebrity Golf Classic.[76]

Ryan is part of the Falcons' online reading program, "Read with a Falcon".[77]

Ryan was a supporter of Barack Obama in his bid for the presidency of the United States.[78]

References[edit]

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  13. ^ Matt Ryan
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  47. ^ "NFL.com - Official Site of the National Football League". 
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  70. ^ Falcons receive honors from national publication
  71. ^ We Have an ESPY Winner
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