Falcons' Ryan gets praise from his coach - WTVM.com-Columbus, GA News Weather & Sports

Falcons' Ryan gets praise from his coach

FLOWERY BRANCH, Ga. (AP) - Mike Smith calls Matt Ryan a "tough Irishman."

The Falcons coach also calls his quarterback a fourth-quarter winner.

Ryan, pounded sacked by Philadelphia's defense, set a career high with four touchdown passes while rallying the Falcons to a 35-31 win over Philadelphia on Sunday night.

The Falcons, who play at Tampa Bay this week, trailed 31-21 after three quarters. Ryan was sharp in the final quarter, completing 8 of 10 passes.

Ryan, in his fourth season, has led 14 game-winning drives in the fourth quarter or overtime.

On Monday, Smith said Ryan's fourth-quarter performance against the Eagles may have been his best as he led Atlanta to the pivotal win following an ugly opening loss at Chicago.

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