New Atlanta Falcons offensive coordinator Dirk Koetter has referred to Matt Ryan as a top-10 quarterback in the NFL.
Now, Ryan knows what he must accomplish to back up that kind of strong praise – Ryan has to deliver with victories in the postseason, a stumbling block for the Falcons in recent seasons.
“That’s kind of the nature of the NFL right now, and especially the position that I play,” Ryan said in an interview on WCNN in Atlanta, according to sportsradiointerviews.com. “Quarterbacks are judged by Super Bowl championships, and that’s — whether you agree or disagree with it — that’s kinda just the way it is. And I understand that, but I can’t worry about that too much. It’s difficult to get to the playoffs, it’s very difficult to win in the playoffs. I think if you’re looking too far into the future, too far down the road, you’re not giving yourself a chance to be successful week to week.”
That’s nothing new. Quarterbacks have always been judged by Super Bowl rings and it’s going to remain that way. Ryan needs to find a way to deliver for the Falcons at the most clutch moments. He’s happy with the transition to Koetter, who replaced Mike Mularkey. Sometimes, the Falcons were criticized for being too conservative under Mularkey.
“It’s just a different philosophy,” Ryan said. “We’re not scrapping everything we’ve done before, but he brings some different ideas to what we’ve done. And you know, everybody in the NFL runs the same stuff. I think what it comes down to is when you call certain plays and how you execute them, and we just need to execute better as players, and we all have confidence that Dirk’s gonna call good plays at the right time.
“I enjoyed playing under Mike and learned a ton under Mike my first four years. And then when you have a new voice and some different opinions, it only helps you to improve as a football player to kinda hear different things and be able to use all of what you’ve learned from a number of different people to make yourself the best on the field. So I think it is a good thing.”
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Brad Biggs covers the Bears for the Chicago Tribune