Within the last year, the Atlanta Falcons and the Green Bay Packers have gone head to head three times and we’ve witnessed two of the best quarterbacks in the league trying to outplay the other. Recently, success has definitely been on Atlanta’s side as they have conquered Green Bay the last three meetings. It is worth noting all three meetings have taken place in Atlanta. Sunday night the Falcons once again were able to put a stop to the high-powered offense ran by Aaron Rodgers. Since Matt Ryan was drafted in 2008, the Falcons have played the Packers eight times, including twice in the playoffs. With Sunday night’s win, Ryan now holds a five to three edge in wins over Rodgers. As Ryan and the Falcons continue to improve, the rivalry between Rodgers, easily the NFL’s most talented quarterback, has only thickened. It has created an interesting storyline between arguably the NFL’s best team versus the league’s best player, and it would not surprise anyone if these two teams met once again with the chips on the line in January.
While the Falcons have had the Packers number more recently, Green Bay has still managed to make things interesting throughout the years. Last year’s regular season game saw the Falcons come away with a very close victory, but that didn’t stop Rodgers from putting up 246 yards to go along with 4 touchdown passes. Matt Ryan put up 288 yards and 3 touchdowns, including the game-winner with under a minute to play. Sunday night’s game saw almost a repeat of what we witnessed in the NFC championship game last season. Ryan wasn’t quite as explosive, posting 252 yards and only one touchdown, but the Falcons were still able to get a very nice win. Rodgers threw for 343 yards and 2 touchdowns but had a costly interception and a bad fumble, which basically sealed their fate for the night.
Throughout the years Rodgers has put up the better numbers between the two, with Ryan finally starting to catch up with the Falcons recent success. Rodgers has a better completion percentage, more passing yards, more touchdown passes and fewer interceptions through seven games against Ryan. But Ryan comes through in the one stat that either of these quarterbacks cares about, wins. These two quarterbacks may not have the loudest mouths off the field, but on it, they are two of the league’s fiercest competitors. And if you know anything about Aaron Rodgers, he will not forget the feeling of walking off that field a loser to Ryan three times in a twelve-month span, and eventually, he will exact his revenge.
At this point in their careers, Rodgers has easily had the more impressive career. He’s been in the league for three more seasons, holder of two league-MVPs and an envied Super Bowl ring that Ryan was oh-so-close to receiving last season. Despite Rodgers having more accolades and better stats, Ryan does tend to match up very well against Rodgers and the Packers.The Falcons appear to have their number, as it just seems like a matter of time before this group breaks through and finally wins a Super Bowl. One thing is for sure, the NFC does not run through Green Bay anymore. It runs through Atlanta with the reigning league-MVP. As the Manning-Brady rivalry has come to an end, a new quarterback rivalry has begun, and the Ryan-Rodgers rivalry has lived up to expectations thus far.