“The biggest thing is, especially with a young football team, is that it creates belief,” Ryan said, via the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “Knowing that you can go into these tough places against really good teams and get the job done. . . . I think that belief is very powerful. Having the mindset that you know you are capable of getting the job done is big. I think that more so than anything, that is what carries over.”
In the first half of the season, the Falcons went 1-7 and there was the belief that there would be coaching changes made in 2019. Instead, the team rallied around Dan Quinn and have gone 5-2 in their past seven games.
Most impressively, two of their wins came against the New Orleans Saints and the San Francisco 49ers. Of course, the Saints and 49ers are two teams who could represent the NFC in the Super Bowl.
Even with injuries taking a toll on Atlanta, Ryan has had a respectable season for the Falcons. The veteran quarterback enters Week 17 with 4,135 yards, 25 touchdowns, and 14 interceptions.
By achieving those numbers, Ryan now has nine straight seasons of having 4,000 yards and 20 touchdowns. At 34-years-old, Ryan understands that his window to win a Super Bowl is nearing a close in the coming years.
With the Falcons unable to make the playoffs, they hope to finish the season strong to gather some momentum for next year. Atlanta will look to finish the season on a 6-2 run when they face the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sunday.