INDIANAPOLIS – In facing Matt Ryan 6 times in his career, Gus Bradley points out a strength of the new Colts quarterback that would not fall in the same category for Carson Wentz.
“Some quarterbacks you go against, you can get away with some things, but not with (Ryan),” Gus Bradley says. “You feel like there’s a definite way you’re going to be attacked by him. Not only through scheme but also with the use of his eyes, how he operates the team.
“He’s very, very polished. I have a lot of respect for him. You feel him in this building. Without a doubt you feel that part of it.”
It’s the eyes of the quarterback falling into the pro category for Ryan compared to the con category for Wentz.
Too many times last season, the Colts thought Wentz didn’t take advantage of things that were there schematically.
A little bit more obvious change the Colts are expecting from their quarterback this season is the timing of the passing game.
“He wants to get the ball out quickly,” offensive coordinator Marcus Brady said of Ryan this spring. “He’s in rhythm. He’s an accurate quarterback. One thing that he brings differently, he’s damn near a coach in himself. He’s coaching up the receivers as well. Like, ‘This is what I’m looking for. This is what I except. This is the body lean that I want you to have.’ It’s just kind of a breath of fresh air to hear that so the rest of the room is not just hearing it from the coaches, they’re hearing it from their quarterback. Because it’s really about them as far as getting on the same page and timing.”
There are going to be some questions about Ryan physically as he plays a 15th NFL season, at the age of 37.
But you aren’t hearing anything on the mental intellect in regards to how he plays the position.
What the Colts are betting on is offering Ryan two specific things.
The first is a potent and consistent rushing attack, led by Jonathan Taylor attracting some heavy boxes.
The second is an offensive scheme, led by play caller Frank Reich, creating frequent opportunities through the air.
Ryan says this system change for himself ranks up there with the one he experienced from 2014-15 (going from offensive coordinator Dirk Koetter to Kyle Shannan). It’s more so in the “language” department with a lot of the same concepts being used here in Indy.
As long as that aspect to Ryan’s new home doesn’t cause many hurdles, the Colts firmly believe they have a QB who can help an extremely unproven pass catching group turn some heads.
“The thing about Matt is he can make anybody better,” Brady says.
“He’s one of those players as a quarterback that can make those players better (and) get the best out of their players.”