Atlanta QB Matt Ryan Press Conference, 01.04.12

Q: What do you need to do to stop the Giants pass rush?
A: I think they have some talented guys in their front seven. They have defensive ends and guys that can rush the passer and they have really played well the last couple of weeks. I think the last four or five games their pass rush has been really effective. For us, it is going to be about identifying where certain guys are, being on the same page with the offensive line, quarterback and running backs in terms of pass protection and then winning those one-on-one matchups. They do a great job of creating one-on-one matchups with their d-linemen and we are going to need to be effective in those one-on-ones.

Q: Are you concerned about playing outdoors on Sunday?
A: No, having grown up in Philadelphia and having played college in Boston, I have played plenty of terrible weather games so I am not too worried about it.

Q: Are you surprised at all by the ‘dirt bag' stigma that your offensive line has?
A: Not really, I don't pay too much attention to it. I know we have guys that play hard upfront and I love having those guys in front on me. They are passionate and do a great job. I like the guys that we have.

Q: Do you see Tony Gonzalez as the prototype of tight ends?
A: Yes, I think so. Tony is certainly or probably is the greatest tight end in the history of the NFL. He kind of set the bar for those guys and has been doing it at a high level for a long time. I think he kind of set the trend and other teams have seen what he was doing in Kansas City for a long time and now with us. It is great to have him apart of our organization.

Q: Can you talk about his leadership a little bit?
A: He is a tremendous leader, he really is. His work ethic is second to no one. When he came here we had a young football team with a lot of impressionable guys, I think he has taught us what it means to be dedicated and what it means to work. Even about the mental approach to the game, when to get away, when to relax a little bit and take your mind off of football. He has really helped us.

Q: Do you see Sunday as a nice opportunity to get your first playoff career victory?
A: It is the first opportunity that I have and we have as a team this postseason. We are excited about that. All the stuff that happened in the past doesn't really make a difference. It comes down to preparing this week and doing whatever we can to keep advancing throughout the playoffs.

Q: How happy are you to have Julio Jones?
A: It is great. I think our front office with Thomas Dimitroff and his staff have done a great job of putting guys in our organization and placing the right fit guys in our organization. Julio certainly counts because he is a great person, great fit, great work ethic, great teammate and a perfect fit for our locker room. I have enjoyed having him this year.

Q: What does it do to defenses knowing they have to cover him and Roddy White?
A: I think it kind of eliminates some of the double teams that defenses try to do to some of our guys. When you have Julio on one side, Roddy on the other, Tony in the middle, and then you add another guy like Harry Douglas who has had a great season as well, somebody is going to have one-on-one matchups and I think it is primarily because we added Julio this year that defenses have played us this way.

Q: Do you keep in touch with the players that played with you at Boston College?
A: Yes, actually all four guys that are up there right now, Kiwi, Snee, Mark and Will Blackmon, I played with all those guys at BC and know all of those guys really well. I have a lot of respect for those guys and they have done a great job. It will be fun to play against them and see them. I am happy for their success.

Q: Do you think the league will be more of an offensive league down the road?
A: I guess so, I think that is the way it was this year. I think it is really the way teams are built now, is to throw the football. I guess it is something that I could see moving forward.

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