Despite the heartbreaking loss on Super Bowl Sunday, Saturday night was a success for Matt Ryan.
The Atlanta Falcons quarterback won the highest honor of the NFL’s regular season award ceremony, coming away with the 2017 NFL MVP.
Ryan enjoyed a career year, guiding the Falcons to an 11-5 record and a Super Bowl appearance.
Ryan threw for 4,944 yards, tossing 38 touchdowns to only 7 interceptions while leading the NFL with a 117.1 passer rating. These numbers were all career highs for Ryan who had been knocking at the door of the elite quarterbacks, finally breaking through this year.
Ryan beat out Super Bowl champion quarterback Tom Brady in the voting in a close race. Many people believed that Brady deserved the award because of missing the first four games and still leading the Pats to a 14-2 record. He also did this with the loss of his top target Rob Gronkowski late in the season and still was able to lead the team to their fifth Super Bowl.
But this is a regular season award, and during the regular season, from start to finish, Ryan dominated from the first snap to the last. Ryan’s 83.3 QBR rating was tops in the NFL which showed the complete season he had at the quarterback position. Yes, he had major weapons with the likes of Julio Jones, Devonta Freeman and Tevin Coleman, but he was the general of the offensive onslaught that was ensued on opposing teams all season. Ryan led the Falcons to a league high 541 points (33.8 points per game) while also ranking second in total yards per game, third in passing yards per game and fifth in rushing yards per game.
The 2016-17 Atlanta Falcons were a well-oiled machine, one of the best offenses in league history, and Matt Ryan was the engine that made it go.
He was the engine that led them past two former Super Bowl champions on Aaron Rodgers and Eli Manning and almost a third in Tom Brady. He was the engine that consistently made up for a defense that gave up massive yardage and a good dosage of points throughout the season until its later stages when they came together. He was the engine that gave Atlanta its best football team definitely since the Vick era and maybe since their last Super Bowl appearance in 1998.
He deserved this year’s award.
Do you think Matt Ryan deserved the 2017 NFL MVP award? Let’s talk about it here or find me on Twitter @Phenombc3.