3 Moves the Atlanta Falcons shouldn’t have made this off-season
By Nick Halden
2. Atlanta mishandled Ryan’s exit
Let’s be clear here, Matt Ryan being traded to the Colts is great for the veteran and is a move he deserved one that gives him a chance to win and re-establish himself as a top quarterback. From Atlanta’s perspective, however, it was an unnecessary move the team botched from the start.
After Ryan’s recent appearance on the Pat McAfee show we know Ryan only entertained leaving Atlanta after the team made it clear they wanted to move on. Ryan was locked in as Atlanta’s starter next season until he heard the Deshaun Watson rumors and begin to explore where he could go if the team landed Watson.
The team failed to land Watson and in turn, was forced to trade Ryan because of their poor decision. Even trading their franchise quarterback was too tall of a task for this front office with the team managing to get back a third-round pick in return.
Instead of having an established winner and veteran leader in Matt Ryan, Atlanta was forced to sign Marcus Mariota and begin searching for their quarterback of the future. The team could have drafted Desmond Ridder and kept Matt Ryan as their starter, and as a mentor to the rookie quarterback. Instead, the team was forced to make a desperate move because of their own mistake and move Ryan without a clear answer at the most important position on the field.