Matt Ryan is coming off his most statistically impressive performance of the season, one that saw him pilot this team to a win over the Saints. Unsurprisingly, he’s up for FedEx Air Player of the Week as a result of that effort.
Ryan’s up for the honor alongside Justin Herbert and Carson Wentz, with Herbert and Ryan each managing around 350 yards and a pair of touchdowns and Wentz mixing 272 yards with three touchdowns. Ryan beat the Saints, so that should count for more in my humble opinion.
Ryan has previously won this honor several other times—an exhaustive list is a bit hard to come by, but he won at least once in 2010, 2012, 2012, 2013 and 2016—and was also the FedEx Air Player of the Year in 2016. It’s only right he gets another crack at a weekly honor after this particular game, given that Atlanta was nearly wholly reliant on his arm with the ground game scuffling and he delivered all day long.
Ryan’s up to 15 touchdowns and 6 interceptions on the year to go with 2,157 yards, and is on pace for fewer yards than 2020 and around the same number of picks, but a passer rating that is nearly 5 points better and his first year with 30 touchdowns since 2018. He’s currently 12th in the NFL in passing yards, 12th in touchdown passes, and 14th in passer rating, and as he’s gotten sharper every week with the exception of the pressure-aided hiccup in Carolina, I like his chances of finishing the year as a top ten quarterback statistically.
Go throw him a vote for FedEx Air Player of the Week, and we’ll hope Ryan continues to deliver wins for the Falcons in the weeks ahead, starting with a matchup against the Cowboys and former Atlanta head coach Dan Quinn.