Terry Fontenot: More important to do right by Matt Ryan than maximize compensation – ProFootballTalk

Terry Fontenot: More important to do right by Matt Ryan than maximize compensation – ProFootballTalk
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NFL: OCT 31 Panthers at Falcons

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Quarterback Matt Ryan‘s time with the Falcons came to an end this week when the team traded him to the Colts for a third-round pick in this year’s draft.

The trade came after the Falcons made a run at trading for Deshaun Watson and General Manager Terry Fontenot said at a Wednesday press conference that the team had started discussing a Ryan trade before exploring a Watson deal. Fontenot said there was communication with Ryan about the team’s plans and that they prioritized listening to what he wanted out of his next destination rather than getting the best return in a trade.

“It was more important to us to do right by Matt than to try to maximize compensation,” Fontenot said, via Josh Kendall of TheAthletic.com. “We could have probably traded Matt to somewhere he didn’t want to be and gotten more. We said, ‘If we’re going to go down this road, we want to do right by Matt.’”

The trade leaves Atlanta with an NFL-record $40 million in dead cap space and head coach Arthur Smith said that “part of the compensation is what it opens up in the future for us” in the future because that hit will create room in the years to come. That won’t make winning in the short term any easier, but the Falcons are banking on better days to come for reasons beyond what the 82nd overall pick in this year’s draft may have to offer.