To many, Kyle Shanahan was a questionable hire for Dan Quinn and the Falcons offense in 2015. He brought a style that Matt Ryan was not a custom to and it clearly showed with Ryan putting up a disastrous 2015 campaign. Fast-forward one year and Shanahan’s offense isn’t just great, it is historically great. The Falcons easily have the number one offense in the league. They are number one in points per game, total yards per game and led the league with 540 total points scored. The offense has clicked on all cylinders this season. Shanahan’s play calling and balance of the run/pass game has made the offense unpredictable and extremely hard to defend. With 13 different players catching touchdown passes this season, defenses can no longer sit and focus on one player, a.k.a Julio Jones.
Kyle Shanahan is the one to thank for this historical season. He brought a run game that Atlanta has lacked since the days of Michael Turner and developed Matt Ryan into a more efficient and overall better quarterback. While there was an obvious learning curve for Ryan and the offense, Shanahan transformed Ryan to being a MVP frontrunner for the 2016 season. Shanahan has been good for the Falcons and Atlanta. Unfortunately, his success will most likely mean his time in Atlanta is coming to an end. Shanahan is set to interview with at least four teams during the bye week for a head coaching position. It’s hard to believe with the amount of head coaching jobs available that no one will decide to pull the trigger on him, especially after this 2016 Falcons offense. With well over 10 years of coaching experience, nine of which being an offensive coordinator, Shanahan has certainly earned his opportunity.
As heart breaking as it is for Falcons fans, Kyle Shanahan will almost certainly depart after this season. He has transformed this offense and Matt Ryan into something this city has never seen before. He deserves the respect and opportunities he’s been given around the NFL. He’s put the Falcons in a posistion to make a big playoff run for the first time since 2012. The best way for Falcons fans to say thank you to Shanahan is to pack the Dome for every playoff game and be as loud and rowdy as ever. This has been a special season so far, so Atlanta fans need to rise up and give the team and coaches a little extra juice for the playoffs this year. So Atlanta, this team has something special brewing this year. It’s time to give this city what has been long overdue, and that is finally a SuperBowl ring!