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The biggest talking point for the Atlanta Falcons this offseason has been what to do regarding the future of Matt Ryan. While Ryan will undoubtedly be the Falcons quarterback in 2021, many anticipate the team will pick a new QB in the upcoming draft.
ESPN’s Football Outsiders detailed one daring move that each NFL team could make this offseason. For the Falcons, that move is drafting Ryan’s eventual replacement with the No. 4 overall pick, even if it’s the third or fourth quarterback selected.
“They should strongly consider picking a quarterback anyway. Matt Ryan will be 36 years old on opening day 2021. His DVOA declined every year from 2016 through 2019, finally stabilizing around 7.0% — the level of a mid-tier starter — across 2019 and 2020. Although the decline leveled off in 2020, the past two seasons were still the third-lowest and second-lowest DVOA marks of his 12-year career, with him now lingering closer to replacement level than his MVP performance in 2016.”
Atlanta clearly plans on adding a quarterback this offseason as Ryan is currently the only one on the roster. Veteran backup Matt Schaub retired and Kurt Benkert was waived a few weeks ago. In the event that the team does select a quarterback at No. 4, there’s no guarantee that player will be successful.
Ryan is the only quarterback selected in the first round between the 2006 and 2016 seasons to still play for the team that drafted him.