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Falcons Rally Behind Their Qb


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Falcons rally behind their quarterback

By Vaughn McClure | September 30, 2013 7:55:10 PM PDT

FLOWERY BRANCH, Ga. – Although Matt Ryan put the blame on himself, his teammates had his back.

There was no need to doubt Ryan when he led the Atlanta Falcons to a 13-3 record and playoff win last season. And the 1-3 Falcons see no reason to doubt their quarterback now despite a few errant passes in Sunday's 30-23 loss to the New England Patriots.

"Matt Ryan has a lot of pride in this game and he works really hard to do well," running back Jason Snelling said. "He makes those throws in practice; some of the ones that he felt like he missed.

"As a teammate, you see it and you want to rally around him and tell him we have to make more plays to help him. We have to put him in situations where, if he doesn't make the perfect throw, that we help him by making great catches or we do more things to help him so we're not in those [desperate] situations."

Ryan threw for a career-high 421 yards Sunday, but one would have thought he threw five interceptions based on his self-critique. He took full ownerships for poor throws to Roddy White on a couple of fourth-down plays in the red zone.

On the Falcons' final drive, Ryan completed 1 of 4 passes for three yards in the red zone. He threw a ball too high to Harry Douglas and maybe too far to the left of Tony Gonzalez. Then on the fourth down, his pass to White was tipped away by Patriots cornerback Aqib Talib.

"Roddy has made a ton of plays for us -- and for me, specifically -- since I've been here," Ryan said after the game. " … I've got to try and give him a better opportunity to make a play on that ball."

Ryan, of course, didn't mention the poorly run routes or the eight dropped passed, as graded by Pro Football Focus. He didn't point the finger at right tackle Lamar Holmes, who surrendered a third-down sack in the red zone that forced the Falcons to settle for a field goal. Center Peter Konz also appeared to give up a sack in a game head coach Mike Smith said was by far the best for the offensive line in terms of protection.

"So we need to get rid of those [sacks] because it's our job to keep Matt clean," Konz said, "and also to keep the defense from having those hurries because anytime he feels pressure, we're not going to get the best throw off. So we need to protect a little bit better."

Ryan talked about what he needed to do better in order to correct the team's red zone issues before next Monday night's date with the Jets.

Smith was asked how he would approach Ryan coming off such a difficult and possibly critical loss.

"I think you have to be brutally honest with one another," Smith said. "And I believe this: When you win, the quarterback and the head coach probably get too much credit. When you lose, they get the lion's share of the blame.

"I know that Matt and I are very aware of that. And we have to do what we've always done, and that's put the previous game behind us and move on."

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Nice to see the leadership, but this is a pet peeve of mine... I wish that Ryan and the team in general would get more fired up at eachother... For example, if they settle for a field goal in the redzone, the receivers need to be talking with eachother and Ryan needs to be motivating the o-line and backs to give him time and get open... Instead of all of them staring at pieces of paper from the previous drive.

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Nice to see the leadership, but this is a pet peeve of mine... I wish that Ryan and the team in general would get more fired up at eachother... For example, if they settle for a field goal in the redzone, the receivers need to be talking with eachother and Ryan needs to be motivating the o-line and backs to give him time and get open... Instead of all of them staring at pieces of paper from the previous drive.

Just because we don't see it doesn't mean it doesn't happen.

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Glad Matt is honest and blaming himself for last throw . Unlike poster Larry said ball hit Roddy in hands

The ball did hit him in the hand...the right hand, specifically.

It was by no means a perfect throw.....but it was a throw that a healthy Roddy catches a vast majority of the time.

And my commentary was more in response to your "throw it low and away" drivel, which completely ignores the laws of physics. Why would you ever throw a ball low and away to a receiver driving to the back corner with momentum? "Low and away" is for curls and hooks, where the receivers momentum turns back toward the QB so that his body can shield the ball.

With a receiver running toward the back corner, your best placement is high and outside. With the CB on his left hip, the receiver has the best chance of making a play on the ball when the ball is put outside of his right shoulder and high.

Matt taking the blame for the throw shows his qualities as a leader. It wasnt a perfect throw, he wishes it was.

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such a bad throw . He puts it low Roddy can use his body to sheild Talb

aqib-talib-saves-patriots.gif?w=640

A few things here:

1) The ball hits Roddy's hand. Talib also hits Roddy's hand to break the play up (in what was the last in a game full of really really nice plays)

2) How much value is a .gif of 1/7th of the play? A healthy Roddy's cut is significantly sharper there and he's not trailing the ball. EVERYONE IN THE WORLD sees this. Roddy's ability to move is improving, but its clearly not 100%. He's made plays on this exact throw dozens of times and come down with the catch the vast majority of them. Healthy = complete.

3) Again, "low and away" complete ignores the momentum of Roddy in the route. Low and away throws are prayers in this situation....

The ball is probably a touch outside.....because Roddy isnt at full speed. Given that Matt has thrown THOUSANDS of passes to Roddy at one speed, its understandable how him being at another speed could lead to missing a throw by an inch or two.

You continue to embarrass yourself by displaying your "football knowledge"

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Well......

The ball was batted away, and Talib's hands are wrapped around Roddy's wrist, how could the ball have been batted away without touching Roddy's hands.

Answer? It couldnt. Because it hit Roddy's right hand as Talib grabbed the wrist and wrenched downward.

But go ahead, you keep posting a picture of the ball after the break up. That'll back your theory up.

clown shoes.

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Great QB's take the blame even when it isn't there fault. The fact is, nobody on this team has given us a better chance to win other than maybe Julio.

Love julio to death but I have to disagree here. Julio was amazing against the rams and good against the dolphins but he was pretty much shut down against the pats and we all remember week 1 when everyone was asking "what's wrong with julio" especially after the fumble.

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The throw was high and away, Talib made a good play, but also had a handful of hips. Ryan throws that ball shorter, there's a possibility that Roddy (healthy or not) makes the catch sliding. Does that mean I agree with Swift? No.

Ryan taking blame for the game after throwing for a career high in yardage is truly stand up, and what leaders are made of. If you've ever seen "Moneyball" there's a line in there that I will paraphrase for this situation, and I think Matt knows this all too well.

Forget all the other throws because everybody else will. It's always the last one that everyone remembers.

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boom

no clue why you don't agree with what I am saying tho

Ball is placed low and away . Talib can't get his hands on it

It's a tougher throw low and away cause you have to worry about ball being batted down at line Ns you have to be more precise and accurate throwing ball low and away to high and outside

it's really a simple concept . When a pitcher wants to put ball low and outside it's hard pitch to hit but when he misses his spot and leaves ball up it's easier to hit

Baseball reference makes so much sense.

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talibwhiteapid555500797084.jpg?w=900&h=665

Probably best not to show a close-up pic which clearly shows Roddy's hand touching the ball if you want to make a big deal about "Roddy never got a hand on it."

And fwiw, I'm a STH who was at the game and posted afterward that Ryan had an uncharacteristically poor game in terms of accuracy. So I'm hardly a Ryan apologist.

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