June 6, 2012; Flowery Branch, GA, USA; Atlanta Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan (2) warms up on the field during organized team activities at the Falcons training facility. Mandatory Credit: Dale Zanine-US PRESSWIRE
Ashley Fox of ESPN wrote a nice piece about Matt Ryan and his recognition of his playoff failure to this point. That's all fine and good, but the part of that article that struck me the most was the part about Matt Ryan's desire to go back to watching film of Aaron Rodgers, Tom Brady, and Drew Brees to catch on to what they do. Why did he go back to that?
It was because of some advice Matty received from Asante Samuel. Asante has played against Matty four times and gave Matty some wisdom on how to be a better quarterback. First of all, I have to give major props to Asante for being a great teammate. He didn't have to do that, but he recognized things in Matty's game that could be improved upon, and we all know Matt's going to fix it.
To me, that's the best advice you can receive. A defensive back's job is to learn everything they can about a quarterback and disrupt their throws, among other things. So when a top flight DB comes in via a trade and can walk up to your QB and say, "Hey, this is what we saw on you when we played you. If you fix these things, you'll be better." then that turns your QB's awesomeness up a whole level.
Even the slightest improvement from this advice is a very positive step. Anything a ballhawking defensive back notices is probably worth noting, and if Matt can improve on the issues Asante has seen, we might have a much better Matty on our hands - and we might not even know it yet.