<
>

Ryan, Smith happy Koetter not leaving yet

FLOWERY BRANCH, Ga. – Atlanta Falcons coach Mike Smith is glad to have offensive coordinator Dirk Koetter in the fold. Now the team can move forward with preparing for the Washington Redskins.

Koetter interviewed for the Boise State head coaching position this week and was thought to be a frontrunner to return to the school he once guided to consecutive bowl victories. The Broncos hired former Arkansas State coach Bryan Harsin instead.

"Of course, we’re very excited that Dirk is going to be here and with us," Smith said. "We all know what happened and transpired today. Dirk’s been an integral part of the success that we’ve had. And we want him to be here. So, looking forward to continuing to work with him."

Quarterback Matt Ryan expressed similar feelings about Koetter sticking around.

"I think he’s a really good football coach and a really, really good offensive coordinator,’’ Ryan said of Koetter. "Like I’ve said, I’ve learned a ton from him in the two years that he’s been here. And I think we’ve worked well together. So I’m excited that he’s going to be here moving forward. I think continuity is helpful – from the players’ perspective – when you know what you’re getting."

Ryan had worked with two offensive coordinators since joining the Falcons: Mike Mularkey and Koetter. This season under Koetter, the offense has fallen off due to injury and poor offensive line play.

"We’ll both push this offseason to try and improve, and try and find ways to be better as an offense," Ryan said of himself and Koetter. "And I’m excited to work with him to try and do that."