The Falcons had been calling this year’s draft a very important day in their franchise’s past and future. This is not an overstatement. When you have as many needs as the Falcons do (out of 22 positions, maybe 5 have an adequate starter), you almost can’t go wrong with your pick.
I was sure the Dirty Birds would pick Glenn Dorsey, especially after it was revealed that he would still be on the board when their time came. However, ESPN told everyone that the Falcons wanted Matt Ryan. I have made my opinion of Matt Ryan clear: he seems to be the best QB in this year’s draft, which is kinda like being the best turd in a shit pile. It doesn’t really mean a whole lot in a weak QB class. I wanted the Falcons to go for OL/DL first, and then get one of the Flacco/Brohm/Henne/Booty variety with their high 2nd round pick. Once the Falcons picked Ryan, however, I changed my tune.
I might just be buying what ESPN is selling, but I am more pleased with the pick now than I was at first. Ryan has the size of a prototypical quarterback. He has a strong arm, and high intelligence. He had a good career at Boston College, with very little talent around him. He played in a pro-style offense his last year at BC, which should have him well-suited to pick up an NFL offense. Maybe the most important thing is that the Falcons need a quarterback badly, and there just weren’t any other options this year or next year.
In today’s world of knee-jerk, instant reactions, everyone is graded on their draft 30 seconds after Mr. Irrelevant is selected. I have always taken the opposite approach of playing the “wait and see” game. I didn’t get too giddy after the Falcons chose Mike Vick. I didn’t throw things when they chose Roddy White. I didn’t jump for joy when they took DeAngelo Hall. I won’t burn my Falcons t-shirts after selecting Matt Ryan.
So let’s give it a few years…if Matt Ryan is leading Atlanta to a Super Bowl, I’ll call this draft a success. But if Ryan is on the scrap heap and Brian Brohm is a Pro Bowler, there will be a surplus of Falcons memorabilia at the local Goodwill.