Offseason preparation key to Ryan's longevity

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Matt Ryan enters 12th season with Falcons

Matt Ryan is entering his 12th season as the Falcons quarterback, and though he is a veteran his offseason training continues to get more difficult. In fact, Ryan has increased his workload as he's aged.

“It hasn’t gotten easier,” Ryan said. “As you get up further into your career you’ve got to adapt and change the way that you do it. I probably feel better than I’ve ever felt, because I’ve figured out what works best for me at this point in my life.”

The hard work in the offseason is paying dividends thus far for the Falcons’ leader. He said that he is able to practice as much as he wants, which is more than he has ever practiced in his career.

Ryan focuses on not just the physical improvements through conditioning and training, but also his approach to the game. Every offseason he assesses where his mental preparation is, as well as his on-the-field training, to figure out where he can improve.

“Specifically, it’s about maintaining strength, flexibility and making sure that my body is ready to play at a high level for the season,” Ryan said. “That’s kind of been my focus.”

The 34-year old quarterback has made strides every offseason, but Dan Quinn said he saw the biggest improvement before the Falcons’ Super Bowl run in 2016.

“I think for any player what’s the hardest thing is when you’re already working at a really good level how do you take it to the next one,” Quinn said. “I really admire how he captured that.”

Ryan plans to hold his fourth annual passing camp with other Falcons’ players in the coming weeks. He credits the camp as a way to work one-on-one with players in a way he might not be able to during a normal practice.

Quinn does not have a say in Ryan’s offseason camp, but he knows the team’s leader will have everyone ready when they return for training camp in July.

“The readiness that he brings out to the practice field, the standard that he sets for him and his teammates, is a really strong one,” Quinn said.

Ryan and his teammates will bring that standard back to the practice field for minicamp one last time Thursday before having a break in their offseason routine.

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