Falcons right tackle Ryan Schraeder’s NFL career has taken a roller coaster trajectory. After playing his college ball at Division 2 powerhouse Valdosta State, Schraeder went undrafted. He landed at Flowery Branch as an undrafted free agent and made the team. Then in 2016, he signed a 5 year extension that made him a rich man.
Just one year ago, Schraeder was kicking butt and taking names, particularly as a run blocker. Fast forward to 2018 and things have changed. Schraeder was benched Sunday in favor of Ty Sambrailo after weeks of sketchy play. That didn’t sit well with Schraeder. (Credit to ESPN’s Vaughn McClure for the quote.)
“You’ve got to play better. You’ve got to have more production. ... We’ll see how the rest of the three games play out. Yeah, I do [feel like I should be starting]. I’ve got to get whatever they are telling me to do right and hopefully get back in the starting lineup.’’
Schraeder’s regression is truly remarkable, if you think about it. It’s possible he’s playing through an undisclosed injury and it’s equally possible he’s just suffering through a funk right now. With three games to play, Sambrailo will effectively get an extended tryout from the team before he hits free agency. It would behoove Schraeder to get his mind right, one way or another, sooner rather than later.