Falcons’ Matt Ryan: ‘We Can Go Toe-to-Toe With Anyone, Any Week’

Matt Ryan

Getty Matt Ryan #2 of the Atlanta Falcons.

The Atlanta Falcons had two extremely disappointing, 7-9 consecutive seasons and this year isn’t going to be any easier.

Atlanta ranks number one for having the most difficult schedule this season, according to SportsLine Advanced Data. Even the Falcons trying to win their division will be quite the challenge.

Falcons’ longtime quarterback Matt Ryan expects it to be a battle this year, especially with Tom Brady entering the rivalry but he believes in his team and Atlanta’s new additions.

“It’s going to be a tough division, no question about it,” Ryan said, via the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “Tom is a great player. Anytime you add a guy who has won that many championships, won that many games, you know he’s going to be tough to beat.”

Falcons Need to Have the Right Mindset

Ryan believes that the Bucs already were a decent team before adding Tom Brady to the mix. He also doesn’t doubt some fierce competition the Falcons will see while playing against the Saints and Panthers.

“Their team was tough last year,” Ryan said. “Their defense was really, really good. Real tough to go against. I expect them to be really good [and a] tough competitor. Same with New Orleans. Same with Carolina. The division has been tough for a long time. I think it’s about us, though. The mindset is that we have to have, is that we [must] have ourselves prepared and be ready to go.”

The Falcons were 1-7 midway through the season last year, however,  turned their defense around and finished the final half 6-2.

If the Falcons can come out the gate on top this year with a strong mindset instead of waiting for the final stretch, then have a really good chance of winning their division.

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Falcons  Make Smart Offseason Moves

Not only are the Falcons facing some notable QBs in the NFC South but when you look beyond the division at Aaron Rodgers, Dak Prescott, and Russell Wilson, it looks intimidating as well.

However, the Falcons have made the changes they needed to this offseason. The first was by promoting Raheem Morris to defensive coordinator.

Dan Quinn emphasized over and over on wanting to get more pass rush from the interior which they’ve lacked. So, the Falcons turned to former Auburn DT standout, Marlon Davidson in the draft as their new weapon. This man is quick for his size and hungry to get to the QB. He’s also been compared to Grady Jarrett as his “twin” several times.

The Falcons also added AJ Terrell at cornerback and the rest of the cornerback depth chart is fairly new and young but there’s a lot of talent there.

On the offensive side of the ball, the O-line is finally coming together with Chris Lindstrom healthy again and Kaleb McGary with some experience under his belt along with the addition of Matthew Hennessy at the left guard.

The Falcons’ defense should be stable enough now to finish right where it left off last season and the offensive line additions should keep Ryan on his feet longer than last season.

Falcons Rank Third in NFC South

Ryan has been paying attention to the offseason rankings that have the Falcons finishing the season in third behind the Saints and Buccaneers.

The Saints have won the division title the past three seasons but that doesn’t phase Ryan from thinking that New Orleans is any better than his team.

“I have the belief that we are right there with all of those teams,” Ryan said. “They have to deal with us as well. We create a number of issues for these teams to go against. If we play our best, we can go toe-to-toe with anyone, any week.”

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