HomeSportsNFLMatt Ryan explains what it would take to return to NFL, says he hasn’t ‘shut any doors’

Matt Ryan explains what it would take to return to NFL, says he hasn’t ‘shut any doors’

by Daniel Morrison
Matt Ryan
Icon Sportswire / Contributor PhotoG/Getty

During his 15-year NFL career, Matt Ryan became an Atlanta Falcons legend, winning the 2016 MVP award and leading the Falcons to a Super Bowl appearance. Last year, he played for the Indianapolis Colts but it seemed like the wheels had fallen off and he was released following the season.

While, as of now, Ryan doesn’t plan on playing again, he hasn’t officially retired either. Instead, he’s decided to leave the door open to the possibility of returning.

“I don’t know,” Matt Ryan said when asked about a possible return.

“This situation, all the stars would have to [align]. I’ve just learned, at least during my experience in the 15 years I’ve played, to just not shut any doors. That’s really the decision behind that. … I’m excited to kind of take this next step and to move forward, but at the same time, you never know what’s going to happen in this league. Anything could shake out, and so we’ll see what happens.”

All of this comes as Matt Ryan appears to be moving on to his post-football career. He’s set to join the broadcast booth for CBS. Notably, in his announcement that he was joining CBS, he emphasized that he wasn’t officially retiring.

So, now the question is whether or not an NFL team wants him to come back and if they’re able to lure him away from CBS for the 2023 season.

Why it’s important Matt Ryan didn’t retire

It is, of course, possible to retire and come out of retirement again. Tom Brady just did it with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers last season. When a player unretires, they need to return to the team they were under contract with. That was a problem when Rob Gronkowski wanted to come back and play with Brady in Tampa Bay.

However, that wasn’t the case for Matt Ryan. He wasn’t on a team because the Colts released him. So, why not just retire?

Well, there’s a good reason for that decision to not retire too. As Jeremy Fowler explained, Matt Ryan is owed $12 million by the Colts. That money would go away if he retired but won’t offset if he takes a broadcasting job.

“Matt Ryan has a nice double-dip situation with CBS Sports and the NFL. Already $12M guaranteed from Colts in 2023. That money does not offset with his media job,” tweeted Fowler.

“Nice windfall for Ryan, whether he eventually retires or not.”