In unsurprising news, Matt Ryan was ranked 69th on the NFL 100 in 2019. The year before, he was a much better 29th overall.
What was the reason for the drop?
Ryan tossed an extra 800+ yards, 15 touchdowns, five fewer interceptions, and had a QB rating nearly 17 points higher in 2019. That’s right. He improved significantly from a down year highlighted by a college offensive coordinator adjusting to the pros. Then Ryan dropped down the list 40 spots.
The Falcoholic’s very own Adnan Ikic covered exactly this nonsense.
The video itself (which is supposed to praise the player who was voted onto the list) is even more disrespectful than the ranking — it starts by talking about how Saints’ DE Cam Jordan often sacks Ryan, goes into talking about Ryan’s advanced age, and has division rival defensive players primarily crediting Julio Jones for Ryan’s effectiveness.
We are further down the list of NFL100 and somehow see the likes of Aaron Rodgers make the top 10. This is not to knock Rodgers, who has been, at times, a truly transcendent talent. Ryan significantly outperformed Rodgers in nearly every statistical category. Completion percentage, passing yards, completion percentage, touchdown percentage, yards per attempt, yards per game, quarterback ratings, and QBR.
Oh, and without claims and rumors of Ryan being a toxic coach killer.
Drew Brees and the remaining shreds of his arm came in at 2.
The talking heads have called Ryan an indoor Andy Dalton, or predicted Ryan would blow the 2018 season. None of those were close to accurate, with Ryan instead having an elite season only two years after winning MVP.
We see NFL fans with some of the same thoughts, even after Ryan had nearly 5,000 yards and 35 touchdowns. Ryan can be one of the best quarterbacks in the league even with a struggling offensive line, an absent run game, and an absent-minded coordinator, and he loses respect across the league.
It is time to admit that the talking heads, fans, and haters will never change their minds.
Ryan was never hyped, whether we are talking pre-draft, early in his career, or even during his MVP season. Opinions were formed and they would never be changed, regardless of what overwhelming evidence has to say.
There is already proof that a great season won’t change minds. He had a truly elite season in 2012 and it did not change minds. He blew up the league again in 2016 and it did not change minds. He nearly matched those numbers again in 2018 and he somehow lost respect.
Ryan reunites with Dirk Koetter this year, his coordinator from his 2012 season. Koetter was the head coach of the third-best offense in 2018, which somehow included Jameis Winston. The Falcons have all the ingredients for a recipe for success.
Ryan should have a great year. It won’t change anyone’s mind. Because if one good season changed minds, there would have been more Ryan fans in 2012. And 2016. And 2018.