Matt Ryan (Matty Ice is what they call him) has proven to be a good dependable QB for the Falcons. Coming into the league in 2008 to a team that was surrounded by controversy, Ryan has been poised and shown terrific leadership. He has made steady improvements year after year and has now become a great Fantasy option. I drafted him as one of my QBs last year and quickly traded him away for Carson Palmer(BIG MISTAKE). While Palmer threw INT after INT, Matty was throwing TD after TD to his WRs. Last season, Ryan passed for 3705 yards, 28 TDs and just 9 INTs. Those are very good numbers. He established a good rapport with Roddy White, but now he has Julio Jones who will make an immediate impact and help Ryan reach for Fantasy super stardom. Right now, Ryan is in that second tier of Fantasy QBs, but with a year under his belt and new weapons, he is a must start every week. Draft him with no hesitation.
Close your eyes and imagine getting to choose from an elite arsenal of weapons before going into battle. Weapons that will ensure you crush you opponent. This is what it’s like to be QB Matt Ryan on game day. Matty Ice will have his usual reliable wide out Roddy White who finished his 6th NFL season with 1389 receiving yard and 10 TDs has established his playmaking ability with 381 yacs while often double teamed. If for some reason Matt can’t get Roddy the ball (and trust me it isn’t often), he has another receiving option in 14 year superstar veteran TE Tony Gonzalez. Last year Gonzalez caught the rock for 656 yards and 6TDs. This year though? Oh this year, ATL got Matt one of the most exciting weapons in the draft: JULIO JONES! Every NFL fan was secretly hoping Jones would magically fall to their team on Draft Day. The Falcons had none of that! They traded up (albeit too much) and got their man! At Alabama, Jones established himself as a physical receiver. He had an impressive combine with crazy vertical jumps and a 4.39 40! He’s going to be exciting to watch!
The main playmaker on the Falcon Def is Jonathan Abraham. Last year with 13 sacks. The team had a total of 29 sacks and 22 ints which is great for getting Fantasy Football points out of a defense. The PROBLEM is that secondary. Last year the Falcons went 13-3 with that secondary, forcing the team to get into a lot of shootouts. Well if its a shootout you want, its a shoot out you will get playing Atlanta because that secondary will allow you to score. I’d pick up the Falcon Def when a starting DEF has a bye week.
There is no question that the Falcons can pass the ball all over the field with Ryan, White, and the newly acquired Jones. But make no mistake: that’s a running team in the ATL. Ever since Michael “The Burner” Turner came to the Falcons, he hasn’t stopped running, and last year was no different. Last season, he rushed for 1371, 12 TDs and 4.1 yards per carry. He was third in rushing, behind Arian Foster and Jamaal Charles, and tied for third for rushing TDs with Adrian Peterson. Turner is a Fantasy STUD. If I have one concern about Turner, it his TD production week to week. He has a tendency of scoring multiple TDs in one game, but none in others. For example, in 16 games played last season, he went scoreless in 8 of them. That’s bad news when you count on TD production from your main RB. Even with this annoyance, I maintain that Turner is a must start every week. I do also think that if you draft Turner, you may want to keep an eye on rookie Jacquizz Rodgers from Oregon State, who can make an impact in his first year with the Falcons. But for now, The Burner is the man in ATL.