Fun little exercise
because there's nothing to write about just because this evening. The subject? Matthew Thomas Ryan.
Ryan is a contentious figure in the NFL. Not because he likes to smoke the wacky tobacky. Not because he's making it rain at strip clubs. And certainly not because he laid out his significant other with a nasty right hook. His controversy centers around his ability.
For whatever reason, Ryan's critics love to pick on him. They see him as a second tier quarterback who can't get over the playoff hump. They criticize him for his lack of elite arm strength. They openly question his mean streak. All in all, he gets a lot of flack, mainly because he isn't Tom Brady.
Look, can Ryan be better? Sure. Is his footwork occasionally questionable? Absolutely. Does Dave's liver look like a diseased mushroom? You bet.
My best guess? Ryan lives just outside the top tier for the majority of the rest of his career. He does have a few breakout seasons, taking the Falcons to three more NFC championships and two Super Bowls, winning one. The Super Bowl victory comes in 2017, one year before his contract year. The Falcons then extend Ryan through 2021. At 36, Ryan loses his starting job in his final contract year, supplanted by the Falcons' 2nd round draft pick, an athletic quarterback from some SEC school. The rookie gets injured in the final game of the regular season, and Ryan takes over in the playoffs. He plays some gutty football and gets the Falcons into the Divisional Round. The Falcons lose a squeaker in that game, and rather than try his hand at free agency, Ryan retires. All told, he amasses 45,000 passing yards, good enough for top 15 all time. In retirement, Ryan cures cancer, starts a micro-brewery, and ends world hunger. Boom.
Your turn. Go!