Matt Ryan grew up watching Monday Night Football. He dreamed of playing in such games well before he became a star in high school, collegiately at Boston College and later in the NFL.
Not only a fan of the game, Ryan studies its rich history in addition to the Xs and Os. Days away from the primetime matchup against the 9-3 Green Bay Packers, he's ready to again embrace the national spotlight.
"It's always fun to go up to Lambeau (Field)," Ryan said. "It's a great historical spot and a fun place to play. It's a different environment to be able to go outside and play under the lights. You really don't get to do that all that often in the NFL. When you've got that national platform, the only game that night, it's fun."
Monday will be Ryan's seventh-career game under the lights of Monday Night Football (1-5) and his fifth-career matchup against the Packers in the regular season.
The Falcons quarterback is 2-2 against Green Bay, having completed 64.46 percent of his passes for 764 yards, six touchdowns and four interceptions. What's in the past, however, is in the past for Ryan, who continues to approach every game with a motivated focus on one ultimate goal.
"It's all about winning the championship," Ryan said. "I think my motivation starts and ends there. I've been fortunate to be around here for a long time and we haven't been able to do that yet, but I think that's what wakes me up in the morning and drives me during the offseason is to try and be my best and help our team compete towards that."