Matt Ryan is class personified on and off the field

Matt Ryan Atlanta Falcons (Photo by Carmen Mandato/Getty Images)
Matt Ryan Atlanta Falcons (Photo by Carmen Mandato/Getty Images) /

Matt Ryan is a four-time Pro Bowl and the 2016 NFL MVP has been the epitome of class in so many ways both on and off the field throughout his career.

Matt Ryan’s nickname “Matty Ice” was given to him during his high school days by his friends, not by his clutch play, but his affinity for being as cool as ice. “Matty Ice” was drafted by the Atlanta Falcons as the number three pick overall in the 2008 NFL draft.

Ryan has garnered the respect of his teammates and coaches in so many ways. From the day he completed his first NFL pass for a 62-yard touchdown to Michael Jenkins in 2008 to his leadership skills and work ethic both on and off the field to the present day.

Ryan has never conducted himself in any way other than the utmost professional with class and dignity. While his career numbers on the field warrant a shoo-in Hall of Fame induction one day, his off the field contributions bestow upon such an honor as well.

Ryan leads by example and is a true leader in every sense of the word. He has an unprecedented work ethic, which his teammates and coaches can attest to by the way he practices, to his film study, to his game preparation, to his in-season and offseason workout regimen.

When “Matty Ice” speaks, whether it is input into game-planning, to calling plays, to breaking down film with teammates, to being on the same page as his receiving corps, both players and coaches listen attentively.

Matt Ryan is respected around the league

Players and coaches on opposing teams also have the utmost respect for Ryan’s pedigree, leadership skills, knowledge, and intelligence as well. This is evident by all the praise given to him throughout the league by his colleagues.

Off the field, Ryan is involved in many charitable donations. He holds his annual exclusive golf event the Monday after the Masters, which is known as the Matt Ryan Celebrity-Am Classic, which raises funds for the Aflac Cancer Center and the Matt Ryan Foundation.

Most recently, Matt Ryan donated $500K of his own money to benefit Atlanta’s black community. Along with this donation, he also started a GoFundMe in hopes of raising at least $2 million. This is a sign of him showing his support to call for an end to police brutality and systemic racism.

This is in light of the recent events in which he has made a commitment to listening and learning with respect to social injustice. This is a reflection of the kind of person he really is as a human being and not as a football player.

Ryan sometimes doesn’t get the overall publicity and recognition that he deserves in the mainstream media, both on and off the field. He continues to make his teammates, coaches, and Atlanta Falcons fans proud, deservedly so.

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His words and actions regarding the most recent tragic events in the United States will continue to have a lasting effect to bring change on many different levels, as only an inspirational leader can. “Matty Ice” has always been that leader on and off the field and will continue to be in many ways to so many people.