December 26, 2011; New Orleans, LA, USA; Atlanta Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan (2) drops back to pass against the New Orleans Saints during the first half at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. Mandatory Credit: John David Mercer-US PRESSWIRE

Kurt Warner: Andrew Luck compares to Matt Ryan


Upon first glance, it may not seem like Kurt Warner is flattering Atlanta Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan, or Colts rookie QB Andrew Luck, but I know that Warner is truly giving very high praise to both quarterbacks. In this article from NFL.com, Dan Hanzus passes along these quotes from Warner.

Probably a guy I liken him to a little bit is a guy like Matt Ryan. A guy that maybe doesn’t have the top-notch physical skills, meaning that great arm. But he’s a very timing-oriented quarterback and he gets back and sets his feet, he’s very accurate, can make all the throws across the field.

And so, coming in, I’m not sure I expect him [Luck] to wow us so much as I expect him statistically to be a good player. He’s very much like a Matt Ryan, who at this point hasn’t necessarily blown us away, but he’s come in he’s won a lot of games, very consistent, makes a lot of plays, maybe doesn’t have the wow factor of somebody like a Cam Newton or an RG3.

That sounds fair enough. I’ll be the first to admit, Ryan isn’t a player like Michael Vick who is unbelievably athletically talented, or like a Jay Cutler as far as arm strength, but I don’t think there is any doubt that Ryan has enough arm strength to make, proverbially, ‘all the throws’ across the field. Ryan has won games to this point with his brain and accuracy, and hopefully after this offseason, with improved arm strength as well. We know he’s not going to bowl over players the way that Cam Newton will, or roll out the way RGIII will, but Ryan is still a fine quarterback regardless. Just ask Warner who compared Andrew Luck, one of the highest rated QB prospects since Peyton Manning, to Matt Ryan.

All of that extrapolation was my own. I agreed with Warner’s conclusions, and obviously as a Falcons fan appreciate them. However, I would also admit some bias. Here is Dan Hanzus’ take on Warner’s comments:

It might not seem like glowing praise at first, but Matt Ryan doesn’t get enough respect. The No. 3 overall pick of the Atlanta Falcons in 2008, Ryan has thrown for 95 touchdowns against just 46 interceptions with an 88.4 passer rating in four seasons as the starter.

No, he hasn’t won a playoff game in three tries, a stink that will continue to follow Ryan. But let’s not forget it took Manning six seasons to finally win his first postseason game.

Ryan has been good, despite his lack of postseason success. And with increased time with his receivers, an improved offensive line, and improved arm strength, I would expect bigger things to come from Ryan.

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Tags: Andrew Luck Atlanta Falcons Indianapolis Colts Matt Ryan