Atlanta Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan doesn't like getting sacked. First, it hurts. These are 300 pound men, driving you into the turf. It's not a pleasant experience. Second, it's demoralizing. Nothing changes momentum lack a sack. But sack totals often overshadow a less heralded statistic: pressures.
A quarterback under pressure is generally less effective than a quarterback with a solid pocket. Ryan himself is the exception to that rule, completing nearly 70 percent of his passes under pressure in 2014. What's more, Ryan was under pressure in 35.3 percent of his 683 dropbacks in 2014. All that said, this year is different. Very different.
<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr"><a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Falcons?src=hash">#Falcons</a> OL has allowed just 13 total pressures, best in NFL. <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Lions?src=hash">#Lions</a> allowed the most with 51. <a href="http://t.co/8e5yiRuKE8">pic.twitter.com/8e5yiRuKE8</a></p>— Pro Football Focus (@PFF) <a href="https://twitter.com/PFF/status/648934189291601920">September 29, 2015</a></blockquote><script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>
Man. Talk about a turnaround. Just three weeks ago, nobody would've predicted this sort of stability along the offensive front. Either the Falcons front office found some real diamonds in the rough or offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan is a zone blocking genius. In truth, it might be some combination of the two. Your thoughts?