I’m in Las Vegas covering Super Bowl week, and I ran into an old friend on Friday night on the red carpet at USA Today’s Legends party: former Falcons quarterback and current CBS analyst and all-around good guy Matt Ryan.
Ryan’s time in Atlanta ended in a way that none of us really expected, and after a really weird season with the Indianapolis Colts, he’s retired and joined the broadcast team at CBS. I’ve really enjoyed seeing him in the booth so far, and Ryan said the experience has been “a blast” so far.
Talked to Matt Ryan about the Raheem Morris hire (he loves it), his transition to CBS, and that’s my QB man pic.twitter.com/j626lgLe7K— Jeanna Kelley (@jeannathomas) February 10, 2024
“Obviously, nothing’s ever really like playing,” Ryan said. “But there comes a time where you start to move on, and calling the games this year, I had a great crew around me. I really enjoyed it, more so than I thought.”
I asked Ryan (and a few other players at the event) what advice they’d give to their rookie selves, and Ryan said he’d tell himself to enjoy it, because it all goes by so fast.
“I feel like I was just a rookie,” he said. “You know, I feel like I was just there. Just enjoy the ride, because it’s a lot of fun, and take it all in.”
The Falcons look vastly different today than they did when Ryan was traded. Arthur Smith is out, and Raheem Morris has been named the new head coach. Ryan thinks he’s the right man for the job — and there were shades of former head coach Dan Quinn in his words as he kicked off his answer.
“Yeah, I’m fired up,” Ryan said. “I loved Raheem during his time there. He coached so many different positions for us; interim head coach, he did a great job with that as well. I think just coming back, he understands the building. It’s a good team. I really feel like there’s a lot of talent in that building. I think he’s gonna find a way to get the most out of them, and hopefully figure out a way to kind of solidify the quarterback position moving forward.”
“There’s no Matt Ryan walking through that door,” I pointed out.
“You never know — there might be,” he said.