Sophomore Struggles or Success for Matt Ryan?

Tony SantorsaSenior Writer IIJuly 24, 2009

ATLANTA - DECEMBER 28:  Quarterback Matt Ryan #2 of the Atlanta Falcons drops back to throw a pass against the St. Louis Rams at Georgia Dome on December 28, 2008 in Atlanta, Georgia.  The Falcons defeated the Rams 31-27.  (Photo by Doug Benc/Getty Images)

Ever since his standout senior season at Boston College, Matt Ryan's name has become an icon in American football. Ryan's most memorable game as an Eagle was on October 25, 2007.

BC was trailing 10-7 entering the fourth, and Ryan rallied the team to a 14-10 win by passing a 35 yard touchdown pass to RB Andre Callender with 11 seconds left.

That moment blasted Ryan into the Heisman race and into NFL scout's eyes.

Ryan was drafted third overall by the lowly Atlanta Falcons in the 2008 NFL Draft. Atlanta was already a mess thanks to former quarterback Michael Vick

Ryans rookie year was one to remember. He led Atlanta to an 11-5 record and a Wild Card berth. Atlanta lost in the opening round 30-24 to Arizona. Despite losing against the NFC Champion Arizona Cardinals, the '08 season opened a lot of eyes, and hopefully brightened a near future in Atlanta.

Ryan won the 2008 Rookie of the Year Award by posting an 87.7 QB Rating and passing for 3440 yards and throwing 16 touchdowns. Ryan showed leadership, his ability to stay calm in the pocket, good decision making, and most importantly he's a winner.

Just in a few weeks the 2009 NFL Training Camp will be under way and the main question in Atlanta is "Will Matt Ryan have any Sophomore Woes?"

I don't think he will at all.

The biggest move that Atlanta made this offseason was trading for All-Pro tight end Tony Gonzalez. Gonzalez gives Ryan a big target going across the middle and Gonzalez will take pressure off of Pro Bowl wide receiver Roddy White.

Seeing that Atlanta spent most of their off-season improving their defense, they pretty much have the same offense as they did last year.

Ryan is surrounded by one of the league's best running games led by Michael Turner and Jerious Norwood. Having a strong running game takes an enormous amount of pressure off of any quarterback.

Ryan has already made close relations with Roddy White. Ryan and White hooked up 88 times last year and created 8 touchdowns for the Falcons.

Matt Ryan is one of the up and rising quarterbacks of the game. He shows a lot of attributes that a young Peyton Manning had 10 years ago. In a few years I expect to see Ryan becoming an MVP candidate almost every season.

Matt Ryan is going to have a breakout season in 2009. This might be the rebirth of Tony Gonzalez. I expect to see Ryan, Gonzalez, and White making one of the best offensive trio's in the NFC. Ryan's numbers were great in 2008. Being Matt Ryan, the sky is the limit.