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Colts QB Matt Ryan reveals the key message he received from Rams’ Matthew Stafford after Falcons departure

Colts, Rams, Falcons, Matt Ryan, Matthew Stafford

If there is one player in the NFL who knows just what Indianapolis Colts quarterback Matt Ryan has gone through over the past months, it is Matthew Stafford.

Stafford spent the opening 12 years of his career with the Detroit Lions before the team opted to ship him off to the Los Angeles Rams. This decision was a mutual one with Stafford and Detroit, as there was no bad blood in the end between the two sides.

Ryan featured in his first 14 seasons in the NFL with the Atlanta Falcons, and as was the case with Stafford last year, he felt that it was best to find a new home in the league. The Falcons later elected to trade him to the Colts in a blockbuster move in March.

Speaking to Sports Illustrated’s Albert Breer, Ryan noted that before and after his departure from Atlanta, he was in touch with Stafford. The reigning Super Bowl winner shared some advice with him that he personally experienced from his own rollercoaster past year.

“I talked to Matthew Stafford right after, and before I got traded, when the possibility was out there,” Ryan said. “He was like, ‘Don’t get me wrong, you love the experience that you’ve had the entire time, and you love the continuity and the people that you know’ … It’s a bit like going to that first day of high school, where you switch schools and you’re going in trying to meet people. There’s that nervous, anxious excitement that comes with it.

“I think all the firsts you tick off along the way, whether it’s first game, first whatever, all those things will have that kind of feel.”

Ryan has spent the last months checking off plenty of firsts, including learning the ins and outs of the Colts offense. As Colts head coach Frank Reich noted to Breer, he has been impressed with Ryan’s willingness to further his understanding of the team’s playbook during the offseason.

“It was refreshing that here’s a guy who’s been the MVP of the league, here’s a guy who’s led his team to a Super Bowl appearance, here’s a guy who’s incredibly accomplished at the quarterback position in every way, coming in here and wanting to use it as a fresh start,” Reich said.

“And as you said, Albert, really putting it in the context of, ‘Hey I wanna learn this offense, I wanna learn what this team is all about, and there will be plenty of time for me to contribute to the process of what our offense will be.'”

The Colts will next see Ryan in action at the start of their training camp schedule next month.