Is Matt Ryan Retiring From the NFL to Pursue a Career in Broadcasting?

Ryan had 13 interceptions and was sacked 38 times in 12 forgettable starts for the Colts last season

Matt Ryan warms up before a game against the Minnesota Vikings.
Matt Ryan may be leaving the field for the booth.
Stephen Maturen/Getty

With free agents like Jimmy Garoppolo and Derek Carr already on the market and other notable names who are under contract but may become available like Aaron Rodgers and Lamar Jackson drawing interest, the NFL’s quarterback carousel is already in full swing ahead of the league’s business year opening up next month.

Absent from much of the reporting that has taken place is what Matt Ryan, who started 12 games last season for the Colts and had 13 interceptions and was sacked 38 times in a fairly terrible first year in Indianapolis, is planning to do. That changed when The New York Post reported over Presidents Day weekend that the 37-year-old is considering pursuing a career in broadcasting like other ex-quarterbacks including Troy Aikman and Tony Romo.

Still under contract with the Colts with a $12 million guaranteed salary for 2023, Ryan will almost certainly be cut by Indy before March 17 when a $10 million roster bonus and an additional $7.205 million in guaranteed money will become locked in. Ryan may want to continue playing and could pursue a backup job, but it is difficult to imagine another team bringing him in to be a starter at this point. That being said, stranger things have happened and there are plenty of teams that need a quarterback, including the Raiders, Commanders, Panthers and Saints.

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The Colts, of course, are also on that list and don’t have any real options behind Ryan aside from Sam Ehlinger, who failed to impress during his first two seasons and seems destined to be a career backup, at best. Ryan may not be close to the player he was when he won the MVP award following the 2015 season, but’s he definitely better than Ehlinger and may still have some good football left in the tank. However, Ryan may decide he’d rather head to the broadcast booth than return to the NFL for his 16th season — assuming that someone will have him.

Ryan did join the CBS pregame studio crew prior to the divisional playoffs and seemed to do reasonably well. But there’s no guarantee he’ll be offered the lucrative role of former-quarterback-turned-broadcaster as CBS has certainly been suffering from buyer’s remorse after spending big bucks on Romo and experiencing diminishing returns. Though it hasn’t happened yet, Fox may go through something similar with Tom Brady when he finally steps into the booth.

“I still love playing,” Ryan said after the Colts’ 4-12-1 season ended. “I’m obviously not committed to anything. Got to see how it shakes out. But I still love playing and still feel like, honestly, there’s a lot of good football [left]. So, we’ll see. I’m under contract, and until that changes, you kind of go to work. There’s a lot that’s going to happen here in the next six, eight weeks, whatever it is. Let’s see.”

We will.

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