This season has been a rough one for Falcons fans. Because we’re riding high on a 2-game winning streak, it’s fair to ask “what if?” What if Dan Quinn hadn’t taken over as defensive coordinator? What if Raheem Morris wasn’t inexplicably relegated to coaching wide receivers?
It’s Week 12, so we have limited options. We can try to make sense of the sudden turnaround ad nauseum or we can move forward and hope the first half of the season was an anomaly. The latter sets up a scenario where a complete tear down doesn’t have to happen. It ought to be on all of our wish lists this holiday season.
Franchise quarterback Matthew Thomas Ryan was a guest of The Rich Eisen Show on Monday. It’s a 10 minute interview that you can find here. Please go give it a listen, if you have a moment. But there are a couple of interesting quotes worth discussing, courtesy of AT&T AUDIENCE Network:
On the sudden turnaround
“Yeah, it’s a head scratcher for us. You know, we felt like the first half of the season just wasn’t who we are. We just weren’t very consistent. The last two weeks, I think we’ve played complimentary football. We’ve done a good job in all three phases of just going out and playing the way we’re capable of.”
On Dan Quinn’s hot seat
“You know, we all love Dan. There’s no question about that. I think, you know, he’s a great coach. He’s awesome in the locker room. Guys really enjoy playing for him. So as players, you take personal responsibility for that .... the last couple of the weeks, the locker room [has been] rallying and heightening our focus.”
You can tell that Ryan has made peace (or at least that he’s trying to) with the current predicament. And as your franchise quarterback goes, so goes the rest of the team. Perhaps that’s what some of the “tank for Chase Young” crowd has forgotten. These guys are playing for a man they respect; a man that took this team to a Super Bowl 3 years ago. They are also playing for pride. They want to win games because winning gives them something to be proud of, something to build on going forward, and something to reassure them that they can still be a playoff contender as soon as next season.
Your thoughts, Falcoholics?
The Rich Eisen Show airs daily at 12:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m. ET on AT&T AUDIENCE Network which can be found on DIRECTV Ch. 239.