Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan spent the offseason going full beast-mode in the gym to to gain strength to turn his downfield passes into near-deadly lasers. Reports are Ryan has five to seven pounds of muscle, a weight gain so great it was likely aided with Weight Gain 4000 (BEEEFCAKE). Other than the likely barrage of obnoxious Facebook posts about how many chin-ups Ryan did and his workout sets (I think you can go to the gym without posting about it, but have yet to see that in real life) many have wondered if Ryan looks noticeably bigger this offseason.
Ryan putting in work.
He looked great last night throwing a great deep ball to Julio Jones. The 36 yard completion was perfectly thrown: accurate, did not float and did not wobble. It may be hard to note improvement in only one pass, but that was certainly one of the best deeper passes Ryan has thrown.
Grits Blitz investigates, comparing photographs from the Falcons official Facebook feed which should be reliable in terms of dates to look for dramatic changes. Previously a tiny 6'4" and 217lbs, Ryan may tip the scale at an extreme 224lbs. Hit the jump for some side by side photos.
Weakling Ryan against the Vikings (left) and Hulk-ish Ryan at camp (right).
I never thought Ryan was a particularly heavy quarterback. He was never a 240lbs+ Roethlisberger, but his weight he was actually very low compared to most quarterbacks his height. Peyton Manning is 230lbs, Philip Rivers is 228lbs and Matt Schaub is 241lbs. Ryan should now be pretty close to a Tom Brady height/weight without the obnoxious hair and a bit more in line with prototypical quarterback size.
Looking at the pictures, the first thing I know for sure is I feel uncomfortable looking at pictures to compare Matt Ryan's physical attributes. Here we have a different arm angle, but I think Ryan has bigger arms at camp.
Ryan in 2011 against the Texans (left) and Ryan at Friday Night Lights (right)
Now I feel like Ryan is just messing with me. His arms are always covered in games. Ryan's weight gain may be something like Bigfoot: you cannot see it and there is no direct evidence supporting its existence, but others will swear it is true.
Here is Ryan last night. Is that slightly more definition in his arms? Are you squinting? Squinting may help. Do you truly believe? Does this bigfoot footprint help?
Like Bigfoot investigators everywhere, we tried but failed to show Ryan is noticably bigger and more physically able to 200-yard lasers across the Georgia Dome. Like I said before, his deep pass to Julio last night looked great, a good sign Ryan is in great shape after dedicating himself to improving his arm strength this offseason.