Selected as a first round (3rd pick overall) draft choice by the Atlanta Falcons in 2008.
In his first two seasons as Falcons quarterback, Ryan has led the team to an impressive 13-1 home record as the starter under center. Ryan’s two-year passing total of 6,356 yards (2008-09) ranks third in franchise history among any two combined seasons by a Falcons quarterback. In 2009, established single-game career-highs in touchdown passes (three vs. Carolina in Week 2 and Buffalo in Week 15), passing yards (329 at San Francisco in Week 5), completion percentage (77.7 vs. Carolina in Week 2), longest completion (90-yard touchdown pass at San Francisco in Week 5) and attempts/completions (44/26 at the New York Giants in Week 11). Named Associated Press NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year and Sporting News Rookie of the Year after completing 265 of 434 passes for 3,440 yards, 16 touchdowns and 11 interceptions for a 87.7 passer rating in his first season. His 3,440 passing yards in 2008 ranked sixth in a single season in team history as he became one of two rookie quarterbacks in NFL history to amass over 3,000 passing yards in his first season (Peyton Manning). Became the first rookie quarterback in club history to win 11 games and, along with Baltimore Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco was the first rookie quarterback to start all 16 games and lead their teams to the playoffs. Tied with Flacco, for posting the best regular season record ever (since the 1970 merger) by a rookie quarterback who started all 16 games (11-5). Became the first player in franchise history to earn NFC Rookie of the Month accolades (October of 2008) while earning conference offensive player of the week honors (9) and Diet Pepsi Rookie of the Week twice (Weeks 6 and 15). Posted a streak of nine consecutive 200-yard passing games in 2008 from Weeks 6-15 and recorded eight contests with a 65.0 completion percentage or higher. Ranked second in the NFL in yards per completion with a 12.98 average in 2008. Helped the Falcons offense break a team record for the most net yards in a season with 5,779. Guided the Falcons offense to the fifth-most points scored in a season in club history with 391 in 2008.
Tallied 319 passing yards by completing 31 of 47 passes @ Chicago (9.11). Logged a career-high four touchdown passes vs. Philadelphia (9.18) on 17 of 28 passing for 195 yards. Recorded a season-high 330 passing yards @ Tampa Bay (9.25) on 26 of 47 passing with one touchdown. Completed 28 of 42 passes (66.7 cmp. pct.) for 291 yards with one touchdown @ Seattle (10.2) and added 26 rushing yards on four carries. Posted 167 passing yards on 18 of 32 passing with one touchdown and two interceptions vs. Green Bay (10.9). Connected on 14 of 22 pass attempts for 163 yards with one score vs. Carolina (10.16) and added three rushing attempts for seven yards and one touchdown. The fourth quarter comeback marked the 15th in his four-year career. Registered 218 passing yards on 20 of 34 passing with one touchdown @ Detroit (10.23) and added three carries for two yards and one score. Recorded a season-high passer rating of 120.7 @ Indianapolis (11.6) by connecting on 14 of 24 passes for 275 yards with three touchdowns. Set career highs in passing yards (351) and attempts (52) while completing 29 passes with two touchdowns vs. New Orleans (11.13). Notched 316 passing yards on 22 of 32 passing with one touchdown vs. Tennessee (11.20). His 300-yard passing game marked the first time in his career he posted consecutive 300-yard games. Completed a season-high 79.4 percent of his passes by connecting on 27 of 34 attempts for 262 yards and three touchdowns vs. Minnesota (11.27). Connected on 20 of 47 pass attempts for 267 yards and one touchdown and added one carry for 10 yards @ Houston (12.4). Posted 320 yards on 22 of 38 passing and tied a career high with four touchdowns @ Carolina (12.11). Garnered FedEx Air Player of the Week and NFC Offensive Player of the Week honors for his efforts @ Carolina. Recorded a season-high 137.3 passer rating, completing 19 of 26 passes for 224 yards and three touchdowns vs. Jacksonville (12.15). Threw for a career-high 373 yards and one touchdown on 34 of 52 passing @ New Orleans (12.26). Completed six of nine passes for 106 yards and two touchdowns for a career-high 146.3 passer rating vs. Tampa Bay (1.1).
Earned his first Pro Bowl selection in 2010. In 16 starts, set franchise records with 357 completions on 571 pass attempts. Threw for career-highs with 3,705 yards and 28 touchdowns with a career-best nine interceptions and a 91.0 passer rating. With a 31-10 win over the Carolina Panthers in the season finale Ryan tied Hall of Fame QB Dan Marino for the most wins by a quarterback in his first three seasons since the 1970 AFL-NFL merger with 33. In three seasons, Ryan has posted a 33-13 record. Finished with a 7-1 record at the Georgia Dome and has improved his career record to 19-2. Completed 21 of 32 passing attempts with a 117.3 passer rating and tied his career-high with three touchdown passes against Arizona (9/19). Threw for a career-high 329 yards on 22 of 32 passing with two touchdowns at San Francisco (10/11). He connected with wide receiver Roddy White for a 90-yard touchdown strike in the second quarter, which marked the third longest touchdown completion in franchise history. Connected on 26 of 46 passing attempts for 268 yards with two touchdowns at the New York Giants (11/22) and added 14 rushing yards on five attempts. Completed 16 of 34 passes for 152 yards with one touchdown at the New York Jets (12/20). His six-yard touchdown pass to tight end Tony Gonzalez with 1:38 remaining in the game gave the Falcons a 10-7 advantage en route to the victory. Threw for 250 yards on 18 of 35 passing with three touchdowns in a home contest against Buffalo (12/27). His three touchdown passes marked his second-career three score game. Posted 223 passing yards on 23 of 35 attempts at Tampa Bay (1/3) as the Falcons earned a victory and solidified back to back winning seasons for the first time in franchise history.
In 14 starts, completed 263 of 451 passes for 2,916 yards, 22 touchdowns, 14 interceptions and a 81.0 passer rating. His 451 passing attempts, 22 touchdowns and 90-yard touchdown completion (vs. San Francisco in Week 5) were all season highs. Finished with an undefeated 6-0 record as a starting quarterback at the Georgia Dome and has improved his two-year record to 13-1. Missed two games due to a turf toe injury (Weeks 13-14). Completed 21 of 27 passing attempts with a career-high three touchdown passes against Carolina (9/20). His 77.7 completion percentage was also a career-high in addition to his 13 consecutive completions, which began in the second quarter. Threw for a career-high 329 yards on 22 of 32 passing with two touchdowns at San Francisco (10/11). He connected with wide receiver Roddy White for a 90-yard touchdown strike in the second quarter, which marked the third longest touchdown completion in franchise history. Connected on 26 of 46 passing attempts for 268 yards with two touchdowns at the New York Giants (11/22) and added 14 rushing yards on five attempts. Completed 16 of 34 passes for 152 yards with one touchdown at the New York Jets (12/20). His six-yard touchdown pass to tight end Tony Gonzalez with 1:38 remaining in the game gave the Falcons a 10-7 advantage en route to the victory. Threw for 250 yards on 18 of 35 passing with three touchdowns in a home contest against Buffalo (12/27). His three touchdown passes marked his second-career three score game. Posted 223 passing yards on 23 of 35 attempts at Tampa Bay (1/3) as the Falcons earned a victory and solidified back to back winning seasons for the first time in franchise history.
In 16 starts, completed 265 of 434 passes for 3,440 yards, 16 touchdowns and 11 interceptions for an 87.7 passer rating. His 61.1 completion percentage was the fifth-best ever in a season by a Falcons quarterback. Led the Falcons to a 7-1 record at the Georgia Dome and a 6-2 mark in games decided by one score or less. At the Georgia Dome, completed 121 of 188 passes for 1,777 yards and six touchdowns for a 94.7 passer rating in eight contests. Threw only 11 interceptions, becoming one of two rookie quarterbacks in the history of the NFL to start every regular season game and throw under 15 INTs. Started his first NFL game vs. Detroit (9/7) and completed nine of 13 passes for 161 yards with one touchdown. His first career pass was completed for a 62-yard touchdown strike to WR Michael Jenkins, making him the first quarterback to throw a touchdown pass on his first career NFL attempt since October 8, 2000 when Michael Bishop accomplished the feat as a member of the New England Patriots. The 62-yard touchdown made Ryan the first player to throw a TD pass of 50 yards or longer in the first quarter of his NFL debut since Roger Staubach tossed a 75-yard scoring strike to Lance Rentzel in 1969. Also became the first Falcons rookie quarterback to start a season opener since Steve Bartkowski (1975). Threw for 192 yards on 12 of 18 passing with one touchdown vs. Kansas City (9/21) and added 15 rushing yards on one carry. Completed his longest pass of the season on a 70-yard to WR Roddy White in the first quarter. Connected on 16 of 26 passes for 194 yards with two touchdowns at Green Bay (10/5) in addition to recording 16 rusing yards on four carries. Recorded 301 passing yards on 22 of 30 passing with one touchdown vs. Chicago (10/12). He completed a career-high 73.3 pct. of his passes, including his final completion of 26 yards to WR Michael Jenkins with one second remaining; setting up a game-winning field goal by K Jason Elam as time expired. Set a career-high in attempts (44) at Philadelphia (10/26) in addition to throwing for 277 yards and two scores. Completed a career-high 77.3 pct of his passes (17 of 22) for 220 yards with two touchdowns and a career-high 138.4 passer rating at Oakland (11/2). His passer rating was the ninth-highest in a game among all NFL quarterbacks during the season. Notched 248 passing yards on 16 of 23 passing with two touchdowns vs. New Orleans (11/9). Completed 17 of 27 passes for 259 yards vs. Carolina (11/23), including completing his second-longest pass of his career, a 69-yard completion to WR Harry Douglas in the fourth quarter. Connected on 17 of 23 passes for 207 yards with two touchdowns at San Diego (11/30). Logged a career-high 315 passing yards on 24 of 33 passing with one touchdown at New Orleans (12/7) and added four carries for 13 yards with his first career rushing touchdown. Completed 13 of 24 passes for 134 yards and one touchdown while adding three rushes for two yards at Minnesota (12/21). Hit RB Jerious Norwood for an eight-yard touchdown in the second quarter. Connected with Michael Jenkins for a 41-yard strike en route to completeing 10 of 21 passes for 160 yards and one touchdown against St. Louis (12/28). In his first career playoff start in Atlanta’s Wild Card contest at Arizona (1/3/09), completed 26 of 40 passes (65 percent) for 199 yards, two touchdowns and two interceptions. Also rushed on four occasions for six yards. Set a NFL rookie postseason record with 26 completions and his 65 percent completion percentage ranks first for a Falcons quarterback in postseason franchise history.
Following a stellar career at Boston College, emerged as a Heisman Trophy candidate while earning ACC Player of the Year honors as a senior. Ranked eighth in the nation in total offense and established school records for 400-yard passing performances in both a career and a season while tallying 4,507 yards in 2007. His five 400-yard performances in a career broke the school record set by Doug Flutie and his four games with over 400 yards in 2007 also set a Boston College season record. Completed 807 of 1,347 passes for 9,313 yards and 56 touchdowns in his Eagle career. His 807 completions and 1,347 attempts established school career-records while his completion percentage of 59.9 ranked third in school annals. His 9,313 passing yards placed him third on the Boston College all-time record list behind Doug Flutie and Glenn Foley. With his 388 pass completions in 2007, Ryan joined Philip Rivers of North Carolina State and Ben Bennett of Duke as the only quarterbacks in ACC history to complete 300 passes in a season. Ryan’s 31 touchdown passes in 2007 broke the old school season-record of 27 by Doug Flutie in 1984. His career-high 435 yards against Georgia Tech in 2007 rank sixth on the school’s game-record passing list. With five touchdown passes against Wake Forest in 2007, Ryan finished one shy of tying the school record of six, held by Flutie. Of the Division I-A quarterbacks in the draft who started 24 or more games, Ryan won 76.5 percent of his 34 starts.
Attended William Penn Charter School in Philadelphia, Pa. and earned All-East honors from Tom Lemming’s Prep Football Report. Captured All-Southeastern Pennsylvania accolades as a senior quarterback in addition to receiving All-City first-team honors in 2002 and second-team recognition in 2001. Threw for more than 1,300 yards with 15 touchdowns and just two interceptions as a senior. Served as the team captain in 2002 and also captained the school’s basketball and baseball teams. 2004 recipient of Boston College’s Mall Scholar-Athlete Award. A communications major. Born Matthew Thomas Ryan on May 17, 1985.