NFL: Ryan named league MVP
HOUSTON -- Matt Ryan was named NFL Most Valuable Player during the league's prime-time awards show on the eve of Super Bowl LI on Saturday. Ryan is the first MVP in Atlanta Falcons history. At the helm of the No. 1 offense in the NFL, Ryan had 38...
HOUSTON - Matt Ryan was named NFL Most Valuable Player during the league's prime-time awards show on the eve of Super Bowl LI on Saturday.
Ryan is the first MVP in Atlanta Falcons history.
At the helm of the No. 1 offense in the NFL, Ryan had 38 touchdown passes and seven interceptions, throwing for 4,944 yards with a 69.1 completion percentage for the Falcons (11-5).
Ryan was not present Saturday as the Falcons prepare for play the New England Patriots today at NRG Stadium.
"Matt is having an incredible year. Obviously, they're here for a reason," Patriots quarterback Tom Brady said this week. "They got great quarterback play, great leadership from him. I'm sure our guys are going to be facing a very stiff test on Sunday."
Oakland Raiders pass rusher Khalil Mack unseated J.J. Watt as Defensive Player of the Year. Watt, who missed most of the season because of injury, was a presenter for the award. Mack edged out Broncos outside linebacker Von Miller by one vote.
Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott was named NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year, beating out teammate Ezekiel Elliott.
Jason Garrett of the Cowboys was named Coach of the Year.
Elliott came to the stage with Prescott as he accepted the award.
"Can we have a knife so I can cut this if half?" Prescott said, also thanking "the Great Wall of Dallas and the other 31 teams for passing up on me."
Chargers defensive end Joey Bosa was named Defensive Rookie of the Year.
New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning and Arizona Cardinals wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald were co-winners of the Walter Payton Man of the Year Award.
Indianapolis Colts running back was named Art Rooney Sportsmanship Award winner.
Ryan will be financially rewarded for taking his team to Super Bowl LI.
The 31-year-old will get a new deal, according to Falcons owner Arthur Blank. Ryan still has two years left on the six-year, $103.75 million contract he signed in July 2013, including $59 million guaranteed.
Ryan could become the league's highest-paid player. Indianapolis Colts quarterback Andrew Luck entered the 2016 season with a five-year, $140 million deal that included a record $87 million guaranteed.