Ice Left In The Freezer?
By: Kipp Branch
TheSouthernSportsEdition.com news services
With the signing of Todd Gurley to add another weapon to the Atlanta Falcon offense, it raises another big question and that is how much gas does Matt Ryan have left in the tank?
Matty Ice will be 35 years of age at the start of the 2020 season.
Ryan had a decent 2019 season in Atlanta, where he passed for almost 4,500 yards and 26 TD’s. Ryan’s 2016 MVP season was thing of beauty for Atlanta, which seems now to only be remembered as the season the Falcons blew a 25-point Super Bowl lead in the final 17 minutes of that contest.
We all know the weakness of the Falcons is defense and the hope is that gets addressed in the upcoming draft in April.
But what about offensive line? Matty Ice has been sacked 90 times in the last two seasons. Interesting stat line is Tom Brady over the past two seasons, has been sacked 48 times while Ryan was sacked 48 times in 2019. That is the most in a single season in his 12-year Falcon career. For the Falcons to be successful in 2020 then steps have to be put into place to protect Matt Ryan.
Ryan has always been known as a great distributor of the football. His career completion percentage is 65.4, which means he is accurate with the ball.
Julio Jones, who may be the best wide receiver in football, has caught 797 balls in his nine-year Falcon career with Matt Ryan being his starting QB for every single season he has been in the league.
Ryan is not a mobile QB, so protecting him must be a high priority. Ryan has averaged tossing 27 TD’s per season. The production is there for the former MVP.
Another interesting stat is that Matt Ryan has beaten every team in the NFL except two and those are the Pittsburgh Steelers and the New England Patriots.
Yes, that means he has never beaten the QB that just landed in his division; the GOAT Tom Brady.
Matty Ice gets two shots at Brady this upcoming season and don’t think for one second that Matty Ice does not have those games circled on the calendar. All of the hype now in the NFC South is surrounding Tampa Bay.
Every great player has a nemesis they had to overcome. Michael Jordan had to get past the Detroit Pistons. LeBron James had to get past the Boston Celtics, Peyton Manning had to get past Tom Brady and the Patriot domination to win a Super Bowl and now Ryan will have two chances at Tom Brady in 2020.
Let’s take a look at the division:
Tampa Bay: Now that they have Brady, they may become a trendy pick in the NFC South
Carolina: Now that Cam Newton is gone the Panthers look like they are in full rebuild mode and may get in position to land Trevor Lawrence in the 2021 draft.
New Orleans: The Saints on paper are the team to beat, but seem to choke in the playoffs every season now.
Then you have the Atlanta Falcons, who currently have 10 former first round draft picks starting on offense in 2020.
On paper, with Matt Ryan distributing the football to Julio Jones, Todd Gurley, Calvin Ridley, Hayden Hurst, Russell Gage, and Laquon Treadwell, the Falcon offense potentially could one of the most explosive in the NFL.
Matt Ryan is the straw that stirs the drink in Atlanta. Ryan loves the city of Atlanta dearly and wants to bring a championship to the city.
Matty Ice is still a valuable asset in the NFL and will not take a back seat to any QB in the NFC South.
Matty Ryan still has ice left in freezer.