August 16, 2012; Atlanta, GA, USA; Atlanta Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan (2) drops back to pass during the game against the Cincinnati Bengals at the Georgia Dome. The Bengals beat the Falcons 24-19. Mandatory Credit: Daniel Shirey-US PRESSWIRE
In the last pre-season game to heavily feature the starters, all eyes do tend to be on the quarterback. This game will be no exception.
That's not to say there aren't a host of players on these Atlanta Falcons worth watching, and you can bet reserves like Dominique Davis and Travian Robertson will be worth keeping an eye on. It's just that after two scintillating pre-season performances, Matt Ryan is the player I most want to see more of.
Some of the same questions are there: Has he turned a corner? Is that arm really any stronger? Is he going to avoid happy feet? I think he's looked sharper thus far in pre-season, but it is both pre-season and only two games. We need to see more.
With the possibility of at least a full half of football for Ryan, this is our best chance to evaluate his improvement before the season. Ice is already one of the better quarterbacks in the NFL, so true improvement plus his weapons would equal something pretty damn special.
So I, for one, will be watching to see if Ryan strings together a third straight quality performance. What will you be watching?