Matt Ryan: ‘We have not played up to our standard’

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Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan reacts to Atlanta's 24-10 loss to Tennessee at Mercedes-Benz Stadium. (Video by D. Orlando Ledbetter/AJC)

Here's what Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan had to say after the 24-7 loss to the Titans:

On the offense getting off to a slow start: "I thought the second drive of the game was positive for us. Not necessarily just the start. It's just sustained consistency. You know, we moved it pretty efficiently. The first drive was tough. Didn't get anything going on the second two plays of that drive, but the second drive I thought we did a nice job answering, scoring points, getting a touchdown. But we've got to be able to build on that and sustain it as we continue to move forward. Today it just wasn't' good enough collectively across the board."

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On trying to get the run game going: "We've got to take a look at it. I can't give you a good answer on that without having watched what we did [on film]. Usually, it comes down to all 11 of us executing and finishing our plays and winning our one-on-one matchups. I played football for a long time. From basically the time I started playing to right now, it's about winning your one-on-one matchups. Across the board, we haven't done a good enough job of that."

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On what he likes about this team after a quarter of the season: "Well, I don't like our execution, that's for sure, but I do like the way we play hard and tough and physical, and there's no quit. Those are our qualities that, if we can tighten things up and get things corrected and be better with our technique, those are the things that are going to help you win games. I do not feel like there has been any of that in this group. There's been a lot of fight, a lot of battle. So that's one of the positives, I think you take away from the first four games. Listen, we're a quarter of the way through this season, and we have not played up to our standard for sure. It's about the men in our building finding a way to make sure our performances are better as we move forward."

On failing to convert on fourth down: "It was a short-yardage situation. It was trying to get a push. We had a power play on where we pull one of our guards and try and run behind the pulling guard. That's what it comes down to. In this league, in those situations, when they know you're going to run the football and you decide to run it, you've got to get it done. We didn't do it there. We had another fourth-down situation where we had a pass play called, and we didn't execute there either. I think you're right. I think there is movement. The ball is going up and down the field, but when we have those opportunities to finish drives, to punch that ball into the end zone or to keep drives going when Dan [Quinn] is aggressive with those fourth-down calls, we've got to make it come to life. We have not done that as players up until this point."

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On turnovers and penalties: "We're working on it, that's for sure. There's been a definite point of emphasis. It was a good play by them on the turnover today. Just it happens sometimes in the pocket. I felt like I had two hands on it and trying to move and [Jurrell Casey] just swiped it. That one was tough, but we've got to find a way to clean that up. Maybe I can go down quicker or get it out quicker. I'll have to take a look at the film. As far as the penalties, the concentration in practice has to be there. We've got to tighten that up. I think we have done a good job of that, but it's certainly not translating into success for us on the field. We've got to keep working at it."

On hearing boos from the crowd: "That's part of it. When you're playing poorly, you're not giving them much to cheer about, you know, you get it. We want to give them something to be loud about, to make those plays, to keep this place rocking. We didn't do that today. We've got to find a way to make plays to get the energy in the building going."

On taking deep shots: "We had a good shot to Mohamed [Sanu], where they had pass interference. Down the field, we took a shot to Rid [Calvin Ridley], too. Those are the ones you've got to get them off you, and we were able to hit some deep outs to Julio [Jones] and to Rid later on in the game, which was the result of pushing them back a little bit. But the middle of the third quarter, it was soft-shell defense from them, keeping things in front. We're at our best when we're running the football and we're throwing play-action off of that. We haven't been able to be consistent enough in the first three-quarters of games to give ourselves the opportunity to do that in the fourth quarter."

On whether he was holding onto the ball longer than usual: "As far as holding the ball, we had some down the field shots where we felt like we had chances. Those are hard ones. When you ask guys to hold up for longer, it's tough going against a good defense. That's one of the things we've got to balance. You've got to balance shooting the ball down the field but also getting it out of your hand when they're pinning their ears back and rushing the passer. Those are things we've got to get sorted out, and we've got to be better at."

On what he can do better: "For sure, got to take care of the football better than I have up until this point. Wins and losses usually start and end with who wins the turnover battle. I haven't done a good enough job with that. That has to be the main point of emphasis, making good decisions with the football, as well as staying aggressive. You don't want to not give your guys opportunities, but you got to do it in the right situations. That's going to be a huge point of emphasis for me moving forward."