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Through 2 weeks, the Falcons use the no-huddle 2nd most in the league

For those who wanted Ryan to call more at the line, you should be pleased.

NFL: Philadelphia Eagles at Atlanta Falcons Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

Falcons fans who have watched Matt Ryan since 2008 have learned that he’s one of the smartest QBs in the NFL. Even as a rookie, when he was allowed to take charge of the offense on the field, the results were usually better than when the plays were being sent in to him.

That’s why there was a growing frustration with many fans in 2015 when Kyle Shanahan basically abandoned any use of the no-huddle. While he did adopt it more in 2016, it was still used sparingly and only for one or two plays within a drive. Even Steve Sarkisian seemed to use it sparingly in his two years in Atlanta, though he certainly mixed in more.

Well, if the early returns are any indication, Dirk Koetter is bringing it back. Through the first 2 weeks, the Falcons are using the no-huddle the second most (in percentage of plays) in the NFL.

While 18% may not seem like a lot, that’s nearly one out of every 5 plays. Now, it seems sensible that the team will use it more at home (where noise is not as much of a concern) than on the road. The no-huddle also requires players to be “as ready” as Ryan is. After all, if he’s calling the plays and making audibles at the line, the other 10 guys out there with him have to be on the same page too.

The Falcons arguably have the roster to be more successful in the no-huddle as well. With running backs like Devonta Freeman and Ito Smith serving as capable runners and receivers, the team can exploit match ups they like no matter who is in the backfield. That flexibility with personnel is critical to success out of the no-huddle.

While it’s still early in the season, there’s no reason to believe that percentage will drop. Looking back on the first two games, several of the touchdown drives were orchestrated out of the no-huddle offense. Ryan’s ability to read the defense, exploit favorable match ups and physically wear down the defensive line has been there from day one. It’s just nice to see that they’re beginning to take advantage of it again.

Your thoughts on the early use of the no-huddle offense?