Atlanta Falcons

Matt Ryan: ‘Bittersweet’ to leave Falcons, but ‘so excited’ to play for Colts

INDIANAPOLIS — Matt Ryan and his family were officially introduced to the Indianapolis Colts in a news conference Tuesday afternoon.

“I want to start by thanking everyone in the Falcons organization, starting with Arthur Blank, for the incredible opportunity I had to play there for the past 14 seasons,” Ryan said.

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Ryan was traded to the Colts for a third round pick in this year’s draft. Ryan and his family arrived in Indianapolis Tuesday morning and met with the team’s head coach, Frank Reich.

Ryan said he was leaving one tight-knit group for another. He revealed trade conversations started last week.

“It’s bittersweet, for sure,” Ryan said. “It’s sad to see it end, but I’m so excited to see what can happen here.”

Ryan made references to the Colts’ history of legendary quarterbacks, naming Johnny Unitas, Peyton Manning and others. He said it was humbling to become part of that legacy.


During his 14 years here in Atlanta, he was a four-time pro bowler, a league MVP and holds multiple franchise records — including the most passing yards and career touchdowns.

“Matt Ryan has been the epitome of a franchise quarterback,” team owner Arthur Blank said. “It is difficult to overstate what he has meant to me personally, our organization, his teammates and our fans. This business is not without its difficult decisions. While this is one of the most difficult decisions we have faced as a club, we feel it is in the best long-term interests of both the Atlanta Falcons and Matt Ryan.”

Ryan is not the first tough goodbye in the past week for Atlanta sports fans. Freddie Freeman’s career with the Atlanta Braves also ended.