Falcons' Ryan Wastes No Time in Getting Started

FLOWERY BRANCH, Ga. (AP) - Matt Ryan had several good reasons for showing up early for his first trip in five months to Atlanta Falcons headquarters.

It was four long months of waiting for Ryan, but he finally feels like a full-time, professional football player again or, as he said Tuesday, "like a kid on Christmas morning."

Despite the NFL's longest work stoppage since 1987, Ryan believes the Falcons are prepared to begin training camp Friday without a glitch.

The core of last year's team and all of its elite players return with no reports of major injuries.

But the schedule is tight. Training camp begins Friday, and all players must report the day before. Free agent signings and negotiations are moving at a furious pace for Atlanta, which opens the regular season Sept. 11 in Chicago.