In the Flying Coach podcast hosted by Sean McVay and Peter Schrager, Arthur Smith had a fascinating conversation about his past experiences in the league, personal stories with his father and family, and most importantly, the role Matt Ryan played in Smith’s decision to become the head coach for the Falcons.
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Shrager brought up his other offers to coach in a different city then asked Smith how much Matt Ryan played a role in him wanting to be in Atlanta. “It was a big factor; I’ve always been a fan of Matt Ryan from afar… I’m just so impressed with how he [Ryan] handles himself, and he wants to be coached, and Ryan [Tannehill] was the same way. But they are different players, and they both have their strengths… When you’ve got players like that, who come in there and work hard, and Matt’s going into year 14, thrown for 55,000 passing yards, he comes in here, and I imagine he works as hard as he did when he was a rookie. It’s unique. It sounds so simple, but Sean [McVay] can tell you not everybody does that. So that was a big part of it as well.”
McVay then responded to Smith, “… I feel like I’ve got some inside knowledge based on Matt LaFleur being with him in Atlanta or Kyle Shanahan, even Raheem Morris, who is our defensive coordinator and what you hear consistently is this guy [Matt Ryan] is the epitome of a pro’s pro. He sets the tone every day; he wants to be coached hard.”
Elite quarterbacks do this, they always want to get better, and coaches who don’t demand the most out of their quarterbacks are doing themselves and the quarterback a disservice. That won’t be the case in Atlanta with Ryan and Smith. This podcast was insightful into how much respect the Falcons’ new head coach has around the league. I mean, McVay is one of the brightest offensive minds in the league, and he opened the podcast by saying, “I’ve been copying his shit for the last couple of years, man.” It’s such a great compliment from a truly great coach; Falcons fans should feel incredibly optimistic about the future in Atlanta.