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McMullen | Deflecting blame isn’t a good look for Matt Ryan

this is a discussion within the NFL Community Forum; McMullen | Deflecting blame isn’t a good look for Matt Ryan By John McMullen Posted on Jul 22, 2017 No one wants their name on the largest Super Bowl collapse in NFL history, so why not deflect blame to someone ...

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Old 07-24-2017, 05:53 PM   #1
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McMullen | Deflecting blame isn’t a good look for Matt Ryan

McMullen | Deflecting blame isn’t a good look for Matt Ryan



By John McMullen
Posted on Jul 22, 2017

No one wants their name on the largest Super Bowl collapse in NFL history, so why not deflect blame to someone who is already out of the organization?

That, perhaps more than anything else, describes why NFL MVP Matt Ryan threw the architect of his career year, new San Francisco 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan, under the bus when talking with CBS Sports recently.

Like a lot of us, Ryan thought Super Bowl LI between the Atlanta Falcons and New England Patriots was just about over after his amazing throw and even better catch by Julio Jones, which should have gone down in SB lore as an all-time iconic play.

From there, just run it three times, kick the field goal and wipe your hands of it.

Instead, that spectacular effort is now just a footnote to the Julian Edelman reception and the Pats’ thrilling overtime comeback in Houston in February. Nearly six months later, the Falcons are still trying to pick up the pieces as preparation for the 2017 season begins.

“There’s always going to be a little sting,” Ryan admitted. “You never lose that. Hopefully, we’ve got four Super Bowl victories after this one, but that doesn’t mean we won’t still be like, ‘Damn, let’s talk about the other one we should’ve had.'”

As the on-field leader of the Falcons and a superstar at the game’s most important position, Ryan went on to deflect the blame for the loss toward some shaky play calling late by a man who is now about 2,500 miles away; Shanahan, the team’s former offensive coordinator.

“Kyle’s play calls — he would take time to get stuff in,” Ryan claimed. “As I was getting it, you’re looking at the clock and you’re talking 16 seconds before it cuts out. You don’t have a lot of time to say, ‘There’s 16 seconds, no, no, no, we’re not going to do that. Hey, guys, we’re going to line up and run this.’ You’re talking about breaking the huddle at seven seconds if you do something along the lines.”

The obvious intimation there is that if Ryan was given his instructions with enough time left on the play clock, he could have gotten the team out of a bad play and into a good one.

“With the way Kyle’s system was set up, he took more time to call plays, and we shift and motion a lot more than we did with (former offensive coordinator) Dirk (Koetter),” Ryan continued. “You couldn’t get out of stuff like that. We talk about being the most aggressive team in football. And I’m all for it. But there’s also winning time. You’re not being aggressive not running it there.”

Don’t sound the alarm bells just yet, but it is a little concerning that Ryan went the deflection route instead of owning the high-profile loss, even if his explanation of how things unfolded is 100 percent accurate and the criticisms are justified.

Leadership is an important aspect of his position, and the cliche is true: While Ryan will certainly get more criticism for the Super Bowl setback than his teammates moving forward, he also would have gotten more praise had things worked out, and it’s unlikely he’d be deflecting that in a similar manner.

Shouldering the blame is part of the job description when you play quarterback in the NFL.

All veteran QBs who understand what’s going on at the line of scrimmage would like more autonomy, and perhaps Ryan felt more comfortable with Koetter’s way of doing things than Shanahan’s. But the results spoke for themselves last season with the latter, and Ryan wasn’t the MVP under Koetter, now Tampa Bay’s head coach.

The new man running the offense is former Southern Cal coach Steve Sarkisian, and perhaps this is Ryan’s way of trying to tweak Sarkisian in a certain direction.

If it eventually ends in a Lombardi Trophy, this will become a footnote, like the Jones reception. But if things derail from here, this interview is going to be remembered.

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Old 07-25-2017, 04:25 PM   #2
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Re: McMullen | Deflecting blame isn’t a good look for Matt Ryan

Interested to see how Ryan handles having a new coordinator...
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Old 07-26-2017, 10:22 AM   #3
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Re: McMullen | Deflecting blame isn’t a good look for Matt Ryan

The name Ryan and complicated systems seem to go hand in hand!
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Old 07-26-2017, 04:18 PM   #4
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Re: McMullen | Deflecting blame isn’t a good look for Matt Ryan

Originally Posted by |Mitch| View Post
Interested to see how Ryan handles having a new coordinator...
Agreed. Falcons fans keep saying it will have no effect. Game planning and game day play calling can't help but be different.
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Old 07-26-2017, 04:19 PM   #5
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Re: McMullen | Deflecting blame isn’t a good look for Matt Ryan

Originally Posted by vpheughan View Post
The name Ryan and complicated systems seem to go hand in hand!
Truth!
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