Matt Ryan on addition of Todd Gurley: 'He's a special talent' 

Atlanta Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan joined NBC Sports' Peter King to discuss a number of topics including the additions of running back Todd Gurley and tight end Hayden Hurst.

Ryan led an offense that ranked No. 3 in passing yards per game (294.6), No. 13. in scoring (23.8 points per game) and No. 30 in rushing yards per game (85.1 yards per game) in 2019.


The Falcons have added Gurley in hopes to improve their run game. If Gurley is able to give Atlanta the same level of production he gave the Rams in 2019, it's already an upgrade for the Falcons.

Gurley rushed for 857 yards and 10 touchdowns in his final year in Los Angeles. In his five-year career, Gurley has amassed 5,404 rushing yards and 58 touchdowns.

"It's very cool," Ryan said. "I think the people in the state of Georgia are going to love that, too. Him coming back here after having playing college football here. He's a special talent, there's no question and hopefully we can keep him fresh and healthy. Because if he is, he's one of the best in the business and certainly a good pickup for us."

Falcons general manager Thomas Dimitroff traded with the Baltimore Ravens for Hurst to replace the production Austin Hooper gave this team over the last four years.

Hooper, a third-round draft pick in 2016, became one of Ryan's favorite targets, catching 21 passes for 2,224 yards and 16 touchdowns.

The Pro Bowl tight end is reportedly set to join the Cleveland Browns.

"Well it's obviously disappointing from a personal standpoint because he's a great teammate and a great friend," Ryan said. "But you're also very happy for him because he deserves every penny, he's worked extremely hard, he's been extremely productive and he's going to do a great job in Cleveland."

Hurst, 26, caught 43 passes for 512 yards and three touchdowns in two seasons with the Ravens.

"I think our trade for Hayden Hurst is going to benefit us," Ryan said. "My hope is that when things calm down in terms of social distancing, we'll have an opportunity to get together and to try and get on the same page as quickly as possible because I think he's a talented player who can really help us."

Ryan also noted Hooper's production won't be made up by just one player. Wide receivers Russell Gage, Olamide Zaccheaus and Laquon Treadwell are three players he believes can step up.

Gage and Zaccheaus saw more game action as the season went on and will be expected to have bigger roles in the upcoming season. Treadwell was recently added in free agency after four years with the Vikings in which he caught 65 passes for 701 yards and two touchdowns.

"We're going to see how they fit into the scheme for us to create some of the production we lost with Austin," Ryan said.

The Atlanta Falcons announced Monday that they've officially agreed to terms with former Los Angeles Rams running back Todd Gurley. Gurley is a three-time Pro Bowler and a two-time All-Pro.

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