Matt Ryan on final play: We had right players in mind, just fell short

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The Falcons won’t be returning to the Super Bowl this year as they lost 15-10 to the Eagles in Philadelphia on Saturday.

They had a chance to take the lead on their final offensive play when they tried a rollout pass to wide receiver Julio Jones on fourth-and-two with just under a minute left to play, but the ball fell incomplete after Jones went down making his break. Eagles cornerback Jalen Mills made some contact with Jones, who said it is “very difficult for an official to call that play” in that situation.

“That’s a play we practice all the time,” quarterback Matt Ryan said. “Certainly in those situations you want to go to your best players. You know obviously rolled to the right and had an opportunity to Julio. It just didn’t work out and that’s disappointing. That’s the life that you kind of live as a competitor when you get in those situations. You want the ball in your hand. We’re disappointed that we didn’t make the play, but I thought it was a good call. It felt like we had the right players in mind and the right time. We just fell a little bit short.”

The Falcons offense didn’t score any points in the final 35 minutes of the game and made some curious calls before the fourth down shot for Jones. Ryan said that fit with the entire season, which saw “too many times that we were a little bit inconsistent” on offense.

That inconsistency led to questions about offensive coordinator Steve Sarkisian during the season, but coach Dan Quinn said blame doesn’t fall on one person.

“There are a lot of things that Sark has brought to our team that we really like,” Quinn said. “In terms of, I can take a long time to go through different spots, so it’s easy to place blame all onto one person and that’s a shared responsibility when we don’t achieve at the level that we would like to.  There are a lot of really good things that we’ve done and it was highlighted certainly tonight where we didn’t get the job done at the end of the game. So I recognize the question, and like all parts of the organization, we assess and see how we can do things better, and there’s certain parts offensively that we’ll want to do better, and defensively as well, so all phases we’ll really assess and look into.”

The assessment starts now for the Falcons as they try to recapture the offensive production that made them the NFC champs last year.

25 responses to “Matt Ryan on final play: We had right players in mind, just fell short

  1. That might have been the worst 4 downs I’ve ever seen in the red zone at the end of a game when it’s all on the line. That makes 2 straight years the Falcons have failed miserably right at the end of a game to end their season with last year of course being the big blow.

  2. The Falcons of 2016 are dead and buried.

    Realistically they probably went in knowing that if they scored 20 and didn’t have any turnovers deep in their own end that they would probably win. Last years Falcons would have been able to do that in the first half. This years falcons wouldn’t have been able to do that in 7 quarters.

  3. If you’re a Falcon fan I feel for you today. During the last 7 weeks of the season I seen a team that was playing below their level. I made a few wagers and won by picking them in the final weeks, proving my point that they are a better team than their record. Those guys were deserving of another trip back to the Superbowl. The just got beat by a hungrier Eagles team. They were written off by most, including some of the fans. And rightly so with Wentz going down. Despite the fall off at QB,they aren’t just one dimensional. None of the teams playing this round are. I think Foles gained a lot of confidence yesterday, even after early miscues that would kill most teams in these situations. The Falcons are going to make the necessary changes in the in the off season and it will be then and the Saints taking the South next year. Fig Newton is a bust and going to digress over the next few years. On a final note, I really thought Ryan and Jones were going to win that game for them.

  4. Let’s give some credit to the Eagles defense here…. it’s about points… and the Falcons were shut out the last 35 minutes…

  5. You can say whatever about the last play but I think it was the 2nd play that was probably the dumbest play I’ve ever seen trying to win a playoff game. A shovel pass to a 3rd string RB on the 10 yard line that should have been picked. Embarrassing.

  6. Why do people keep acting like them only scoring 10 is a shock? The Eagles has basically the same defense last year, against the mythical 2016 offense, and held them to 15. Their only win during a 1-7 stretch. They held Ryan to 267 on barely 50%, with a TD and an INT. That TD was a 67 with under 5 minutes where a guy fell down. Before that he was at 200yds and an INT

    Some coaches just have certain QB’s number. In this case, Schwartz clearly knows how to make Ryan uncomfortable. Maybe he’s just not comfortable playing that close to home. I don’t know what it is, but it is clearly something

  7. skolvikings2017 says:
    January 14, 2018 at 11:14 am
    That might have been the worst 4 downs I’ve ever seen in the red zone at the end of a game when it’s all on the line. That makes 2 straight years the Falcons have failed miserably right at the end of a game to end their season with last year of course being the big blow.
    ——————————————————————————————

    And I enjoyed every minute of it! Signed Panther Fan!!! Now Vikings handle your business today as well!!!!

  8. That was the worst 4 play sequence in a must-score situation I’ve ever seen. If Quinn doesn’t see how bad Sarkisian is, that’s just more proof that it’s tike to replace Quinn. The Falcons are already kicking themselves for not promoting Shanahan and firing Quinn last year when they had the chance.

  9. “Those guys were deserving of another trip back to the Superbowl.”

    No they weren’t. They would have actually had to win yesterday’s game and the conference championship next weekend to “deserve another trip to the Super Bowl”

  10. It’s a credit to Julio that the final pass looked even halfway catchable. He is a rock star. As for Matty Iced…

  11. Watching the end of the game I said :

    1) Eagles only getting FG on last possession SHOULD have cost them the game
    2) ATL will get into the redzone and have a chance because of Matt Ryan/Julio
    3) ATL wont get it done at crunch time because they are not clutch

  12. Julio Jones tripped on his own in the end zone and then let the ball go through his hands, and anyway he jumped in such a way that he would have landed out of bounds even if he would have caught the ball.
    Great wide receivers are supposed to catch those balls
    Best player in the league between the 20 yard lines, atrocious in the Red Zone.

  13. The final play was terrible….roll out a slow footed QB and give him one obvious target in a very congested corner of the end zone. Had bust written all over it before it happened. Sorry Atlanta fans, your teams OC let you down.

  14. I agree with most written above, with that said was more than a little surprised nothing was called on final play, two WR’s on side Ryan rolled to were taken to the ground in their routes.

    One other thing that field is trash, poor footing, not sure I want to see a Championship game decided by the quality of the field.

  15. I hear a lot about the bad play calling from Atlanta on the last 4 plays. I get it, but at the same time they went to Julio 2 out of 4 of those plays. You have to go to your playmaker on those plays and they tried a couple times. If they woulda scored we’d be hearing about how great Atlanta is. Fact is, Philly slowed down atl for most of that game. Falcons got their 10 points off of 2 EAGLES fumbles. Other than that, falcons got held scoreless.

  16. getadealdonealready says:
    January 14, 2018 at 12:51 pm
    I agree with most written above, with that said was more than a little surprised nothing was called on final play, two WR’s on side Ryan rolled to were taken to the ground in their routes.

    One other thing that field is trash, poor footing, not sure I want to see a Championship game decided by the quality of the field.

    0 2 Rate This

    Well for one, I saw Julio slip, not get taken down. And regarding the field, those are real playoff football weather conditions right there. Not indoor football on padded carpet, or outdoor football on fake turf like new England. They played in freezing temperatures with the whole region getting hit with bad weather and snow. I don’t know what else to tell you. If falcons fans or any fans or players don’t like it they should get home field advantage and play indoors on their carpet.

  17. Really? Because everyone and their mother was screaming roll out, that includes all 11 on the eagles D. I dont understand that play call, ever, the defense only has to cover 1/3 of the field and at the goal line where there isn’t much room to begin with. Whatever, the better team with the better coaching staff won, hats off to dougie p

  18. Here we go, now its field condition. Real football is played outside on REAL grass. I understand some teams don’t like that which is understandable, might I suggest you go into the playoffs as a #1Seed instead of a #6.

  19. Julio did trip….but the hand on his shoulder that knocked him down as he tried to get up is still a penalty. Great no call though. You give Atlanta a 1st there, it’s like deciding the game on a ticky tack call. Don’t throw the ball to a guy who’s covered and expect a gift.

  20. I don’t get the 4th down goal. I dislike roll outs there because then the defense only needs to defend half the field. At least make them defend all across the board.

  21. ackedupboonie says:
    January 14, 2018 at 2:08 pm
    Julio did trip….but the hand on his shoulder that knocked him down as he tried to get up is still a penalty. Great no call though. You give Atlanta a 1st there, it’s like deciding the game on a ticky tack call. Don’t throw the ball to a guy who’s covered and expect a gift

    Um ur allowed to hit the wr with in 5 yards of LOS. But that didnt happen. Julio slipped then Mills stumbled over his body knocking him SLIGHTLY back down. Incidental. Not a foul.

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