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Is Matt Ryan or Matthew Stafford more overrated?


Is Lions Matthew Stafford or Falcons Matt Ryan more overrated?

By: Jeremy Trottier

With the NFL offseason primarily wrapped up, we see some of the veterans of the world being traded and some remaining the same.  Matthew Stafford was traded to the Los Angeles Rams this offseason, which should definitely do him well as a player.  While Matt Ryan has remained in Atlanta with Julio Jones potentially on the move in the near future.

However, in this article I will be dictating which of the two quarterbacks is more overrated currently, as well as why.  Granted, this is not a dig at either QB, as they are both phenomenal talents, its more about who gets more hype for doing less.

2020 Performances

One of the easiest ways to determine this is how each quarterback performed in their respective teams.  They had relatively similar weapons in terms of value, between Julio Jones, Kenny Golladay, Marvin Jones jr., Calvin Ridley, TJ Hockenson, and Hayden Hurst.  While they are different in terms of where the value lies, they are about the same in terms of receiving cores so the numbers should show dividends.

Here are each of their statlines from 2020:

  • Matt Ryan: 16/16 games started, 4-12 record, 407 completions on 626 attempts (65%), 4,581 yards, 26 touchdowns to 11 interceptions, and a 67.0 QBR
  • Matthew Stafford: 16/16 games started, 5-11 record, 339 completions on 528 attempts (64.2%), 4,084 yards, 26 touchdowns to 10 interceptions, and a 68.4 QBR

These stats show Matt Ryan threw more often and completed slightly more effectively, but Stafford threw more proportional touchdowns (more on less attempts) as well as one less interception and a better QBR. Overall, their stats do not really change a ton, as they are so vaguely similar in different ways that neither are really “overrated” solely based on this.

Supporting Cast

As I brought up earlier, the supporting cast plays a huge role in how a QB plays and their stats.  As if one QB has significantly better players around them, they will perform much better, as one would expect.  With that said, here are each of their supporting casts and info regarding each:

Matt Ryan:

Receiving threats: Julio Jones, Calvin Ridley, Hayden Hurst, Olimade Zaccheaus, Russell Gage

O-line: According to PFF (21st) According to sacks (28th)

Defense: 19th overall

Matthew Stafford:

Receiving threats: Kenny Golladay, Marvin Jones Jr., T.J. Hockenson, Danny Ammendola

O-line: According to PFF (13th) According to sacks (27th)

Defense: 32nd overall (worst in the league)

One of the main points of emphasis here is defense, as it allows the offense back on the field with every turnover it forces and however well it performs.  Matt Ryan was working with a middle of the pack defense statistically, while Stafford worked with the worst in the league.  The offensive lines are favoring the Lions, however according to sack numbers are pretty much the same.  Stafford also had a slightly worse receiving corps, in terms of depth, and with WR1 Kenny Golladay injured all but five games this is taken away.


This ended up being significantly closer than I thought it would be.  Matt Ryan has the better overall stats due to passing more often than Stafford, however also passed more efficiently.  With that said, Stafford had overall the worse supporting cast around him.  This comes down to which factors a bigger role into overratedness.  

With everything taken into account, Matt Ryan has to be considered the slightly more overrated player here.  Mainly because Stafford was working with absolutely nothing on defense, and about the same in terms of weapons and line.  However, if Stafford were to perform statistically worse than Ryan this year with the Rams, this is a completely different conversation entirely.

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