Falcons' quarterback Matt Ryan officially retires from NFL

Quarterback Matt Ryan has retired from the NFL.

The 38-year-old made it official on Monday after signing a one-day contract with the Atlanta Falcons, allowing him to retire as a Falcon. He thanked the Falcons and Atlanta in a video posted to social media. 

Ryan's NFL journey started in 2008 and lasted until 2022, with almost his entire career spent with the Falcons.

He was picked up by Atlanta from Boston College as the No. 3 overall draft pick in 2008, and he quickly became the team's starting quarterback. In his first year, he played all 16 games, winning 11 and completing 61.1% of his passes for 3,440 yards, 16 touchdowns, and 11 interceptions. Ryan's rookie performance helped the Falcons reach the playoffs, although they fell short against the Arizona Cardinals.

FLOWERY BRANCH, GA - AUGUST 04: Former Atlanta Falcon quarterback Matt Ryan with his sons during Atlanta Falcons training camp on August 4, 2023 at IBM Performance Field in Flowery Branch, GA. (Photo by Jeff Robinson/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Moving forward to 2021, Ryan played all 17 games, marking his final season with the Falcons. He completed 67% of his passes for 3,968 yards, 20 touchdowns, and 12 interceptions. Despite his efforts, the Falcons ended the season with a 7-10 record, their best since Ryan's rookie year.

Throughout his time with the Falcons, Ryan started in 222 out of 225 regular-season games, amassing a winning record of 120-102. He led the team to six playoff appearances, including a memorable Super Bowl run in 2016. Along the way, he set numerous franchise passing records.

ATLANTA, GA - JANUARY 09: Atlanta Falcons Quarterback Matt Ryan (2) warms up prior to the final NFL regular season game between the Atlanta Falcons and the New Orleans Saints on January 9, 2022 at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by

Ryan holds the Falcons' all-time passing record with 5,242 completions in 8,003 attempts, totaling 59,735 yards, 367 touchdowns, and 170 interceptions. He boasts the best average passing yards per game and the highest completion rate among players with at least 10 games played. Additionally, he threw the longest pass in 2019, a 93-yarder, which also led the league that year.


During his time with the Falcons, Ryan worked with three head coaches: Mike Smith (2008-14), Dan Quinn (2015-20), and Arthur Smith (2021). Raheem Morris served as Ryan's interim head coach for 11 games in 2020.

The Falcons traded Ryan to the Indianapolis Colts on March 21, 2022. He played with them for one season before being released. 


On May 15, 2023, Ryan joined CBS Sports as an NFL analyst for select games and shows for the upcoming season.

ATLANTA, GEORGIA - OCTOBER 15: Former Atlanta Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan talks with Atlanta Falcons coach T. J. Yates prior to an NFL football game against the Washington Commanders at Mercedes-Benz Stadium on October 15, 2023 in Atlanta, Georgia.