Falcons had to call a timeout because Matt Ryan broke his knee brace while sliding

<a class="link rapid-noclick-resp" href="/nfl/teams/atl" data-ylk="slk:Atlanta Falcons">Atlanta Falcons</a> quarterback <a class="link rapid-noclick-resp" href="/nfl/players/8780/" data-ylk="slk:Matt Ryan">Matt Ryan</a> (2) broke a knee brace sliding to the ground in the NFL’s opener. (AP)
Atlanta Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan (2) broke a knee brace sliding to the ground in the NFL’s opener. (AP)

You see plenty of reasons for players to have to come out of games, but Matt Ryan probably didn’t figure to have to come to the sideline because of a blown-out knee brace.

The Atlanta Falcons quarterback scrambled and took off for a short run in the second quarter against the Philadelphia Eagles. Ryan doesn’t run often and had an awkward slide. It looked awkward because he somehow bent his knee brace when he hit the turf.

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NBC showed Ryan moving slowly to the sideline and calling to the sideline, and every Falcons fan must have freaked out. But it was clear pretty soon that Ryan had just broken his knee brace. As uncommon as that is.

What did the Falcons do when Matt Ryan’s knee brace broke?

The scene that followed was pretty humorous. The Falcons equipment crew frenetically worked to either fix the brace or get it off. Ryan wasn’t going to be able to keep on playing with the brace bent. We even got a PG-13 moment when Ryan yanked down his jersey pants to help in the process (no FCC violation for NBC; Ryan had compression pants on underneath).

“It was like a pit stop,” NBC color announcer Cris Collinsworth quipped.

Eventually the Falcons equipment folks decided to simply get a scissors and cut off Ryan’s knee brace. Ryan came back in the game, sans brace, after the timeout. It was a funny moment in a pretty ugly first half of football on Thursday night.

It’s not the first time a QB has wrecked a brace with a slide

Strangely enough, it’s not the first or even the second time a quarterback’s bad slide has cost a team a knee brace.

Joe Flacco has broken a knee brace on an awkward slide twice, once in 2016 and another time in 2017.

“It’s definitely a lot easier to slide without it,” Flacco told the Baltimore Sun after breaking his second brace last year. “So they had a backup one for me, and I didn’t put it back on. So it was quicker at the time just to take that one off and get back in the game.”

So at least Ryan wasn’t the first to do it. The bad thing is, his blooper was probably the most memorable moment of the first half of the NFL’s season opener.

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Frank Schwab is a writer for Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at shutdown.corner@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!

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