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Matt Ryan on pace for his best season

Dirk Koetter has set up Matt Ryan for his best season in the NFL

Scott Cunningham

The 2011 season saw Matt Ryan throw for 4,177 yards, 29 touchdowns, and 12 interceptions. At the mid-point it seemed like Ryan would coast to breaking his personal best, but with just 165 yards against New Orleans last Thursday, it might be a little more difficult for Atlanta's QB to best himself.

Through twelve games Matt Ryan has 3,590 passing yards, 22 touchdowns and 13 interceptions. An average of 299 yards and 1.83 TDs per game. Needing merely 146 yards per game, it should allow for easy to coast to the yard record -- given that he's on pace for 4,700, but it's his career high 29 touchdowns that may be a lot closer, as Ryan is on pace to tie it.

In the grand scheme of things it means nothing. Matt Ryan would trade personal records for a deep playoff run, and a Superbowl birth. However, when the Falcons' QB is on pace for the most yards, and highest yards per attempt, all while posting a 67.5% completion rating, it sheds light on a larger issue which is Dirk Koetter's offense.

The fear from many of Koetter's detractors was that the former Jacksonville offensive coordinator played things too safe, and was too predictable. Thus far in Atlanta he's been anything but. Each week has been an offensive wild-card, making this team difficult to predict. One game they'll lean on a pass-heavy scheme utilizing Tony Gonzalez, and the next it's a heavy dose of Michael Turner and Julio Jones. Having a larger canvas, and larger tool-set has allowed Dirk Koetter to truly turn Ryan into one of the league's best quarterbacks.

Records can wait, for now. There are another four games for the Falcons to win, and home field advantage to secure. That's what really matters.

Photographs by coka_koehler used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.