The Atlanta Falcons were well on their way to victory over the New England Patriots heading into halftime of Super Bowl 51. Veteran quarterback Matt Ryan was two quarters away from getting the best of Tom Brady and company, then it all fell apart leading to a historic collapse and another Super Bowl title for New England.
The reigning NFL MVP has had over two months to reflect on losing a 25-point lead in the second half of the Super Bowl and now wants to move on. Ryan spoke to the media earlier this week and was asked about the loss saying the following, via ESPN:
"It sucks. There's no getting around it," Ryan said Wednesday. "You hang on to it for a little bit. You're in kind of your spot, whatever that is, your dark place for a little bit. Then you realize life goes on."
Historic losses on the biggest stage are not easily forgotten by professional athletes. Some players never get over disappointing losses, even if they bounce back to win titles later in their careers.
Ryan, as he should, is looking to the future and what is ahead rather than what the Falcons are leaving behind, via ESPN:
"We've got different guys in the building now. We're going to be a different team than we were last year," Ryan said. "Our focus needs to be in front of us."
Atlanta is expected to be a powerhouse in the NFC once again during the 2017 NFL season. Ryan and company will be sporting one of the most potent offenses in the league with Julio Jones downfield, Devonte Freeman coming out of the backfield, and an MVP leading the way under center.
The Falcons will get their NFC title defense underway on the road against the Chicago Bears on Sept. 10. In Week 2, Ryan and company will face their first tough opponent in the Green Bay Packers who will likely be looking to make a statement after getting crushed by the Falcons in the NFC Championship Game last season.