Another media outlet fails to respect Matt Ryan.
We get it, we come off as a Matt Ryan apologist website at times, but when a quarterback of his stature fails to gain respect despite a dozen years of proven ability someone has to take up for him. This extends far beyond than Matt Ryan being the greatest quarterback in franchise history, he is literally one of the games’ greatest quarterbacks.
We could re-hash all that he has accomplished from a statistical standpoint and that he is the first to accomplish several passing achievements in the NFL, but that has been done. We could talk about all the Atlanta Falcons franchise records that he holds but that too has been done. We could even write about all the receivers that he has helped go from unknown to multimillionaires, but that is for another time.
Instead, let’s look at a Sporting News article published a couple weeks ago that ranked Matt Ryan as the 13th best quarterback in the league. Here is all writer Vinnie Iyer will tell you about how he formulated his rankings for Sporting News:
"Although what a quarterback has done in the recent past gets considerable weight for where he ranks, as usual, this is a forward-thinking list that focuses more on upside for the upcoming season."
We get it, arguing that Matt Ryan is better than Lamar Jackson or Dak Prescott would be fruitless at this point as fans are enamored with their abilities as runners, not throwing the ball but their ability to move and pick up yards with their legs.
Fine. We will concede that Jackson, Patrick Mahomes, Russell Wilson, and Deshaun Watson should all be ranked ahead of Matt Ryan at this point. They are all exciting young quarterbacks that are going to go on to achieve amazing things in the NFL.
But when looking at this list and Iyer’s rankings, Falcons fans should be upset to see the following ranked ahead of Matt Ryan.
Matt Ryan is better than most of the QB’s ranked ahead of him
Brees, Brady, Rodgers, and Roethlisberger are only ranked ahead of Matt because at some point they have won a Super Bowl and have thrown for a bunch of yards over their Hall of Fame careers. Entering the 2020 season, not a single one of them is better than Matt Ryan.
Ranking Stafford, Wentz, and Cousins ahead of Matt Ryan is nothing but hate for the Atlanta Falcons and the city. There is no sensical football reason to rank those three quarterbacks ahead of Matt Ryan. Neither Stafford, Wentz, or Cousins are better than Ryan on their best day and none of them have come close to accomplishing anything that he has.
Everyone wants to bring Matt Ryan’s playoff record into account when talking about his elite status, but these three quarterbacks have a combined 1-6 playoff record with just five combined playoff seasons.
We should stop being shocked every time these nonsensical rankings come out. Even after being the 2016 NFL MVP, Matt Ryan got zero love. Hopefully, 2020 will prove to be his best year yet in the NFL and start to get the respect he has actually earned over the last 12 years.