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NFL - US Sports: Falcons leave Ryan trade door open

The Atlanta Falcons may be thinking of moving on from their quarterback of the last 15 years after neither general manager Terry Fontenot nor coach Arthur Smith refused to rule out the possibility of trading Matt Ryan this offseason.

Trade talk has been heating up this week in Indianapolis where key coaching and personnel staff of the Falcons, who are 9/2 to win the NFC South in 2022, have been giving clues to their thinking.

Atlanta keeping options open

Falcons owner Arthur Blank seemed to rule out any imminent change at quarterback when he spoke to the media during Super Bowl week.

However, Blank did go on to state how the franchise were looking to implement a "succession plan" to ensure the most important position on the field isn't neglected.

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Smith explains Ryan stance

Smith refused to commit to the 36-year-old Ryan being the Falcons' quarterback in 2022 when he spoke on Tuesday.

"I anticipate Matt being a part of the team, but you don't ever back yourself into a corner," the Falcons coach said at a press conference, via

"Somebody gives you an offer you can't refuse - Matt knows how we feel about him. I think Matt's got a lot of good football left in him."

Fontenot was happy to address questions about QBs available to draft this year, commenting on the "different flavours" that comprised the group.

Neither he nor Smith took the opportunity to publicly state their commitment to Ryan, who has two years left on his current contract.

Several NFL teams, such as the Denver Broncos, Tampa Bay Buccaneers and maybe even the Indianapolis Colts, are understood to be looking for a veteran starter at QB to help rosters that are strong in most other departments.

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