Matt Ryan took a beating this season.
Ryan probably hasn’t been sacked or knocked around this much since his rookie season in Atlanta. For Ryan and the Falcons, a season that started out towards a Super Bowl, crumbled under injuries and inconsistent play.
Throughout the whole season, Ryan refused to throw teammates and coaches under the bus, but according to ESPN.com, Roddy White will.
White told reporters that better protection for their franchise quarterback is a pressing need.
“Next year, that’s got to be something that we improve: We’ve got to keep our quarterback clean because he’s not going to make it,” White said. “You keep taking hits and hits and you’re not going to make it. We’re going to have to find ways to get him protected, keep him upright so he can do what he do and that’s make throws and win football games.”
Ryan was sacked a career-high 44 times this season. In Sunday’s 21-20 loss the Carolina Panthers, he was hit 14 times on top of being sacked nine times.
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“You know what? I feel good,” Ryan maintained concerning his health. “Knock on wood, at the end of the season, I’m healthy.
“We all have to improve, there’s no doubt about it. I have to play better. We have to play better up front. We have to play better on the outside.