FLOWERY BRANCH, Ga. -- Atlanta Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan said part of his emphasis on footwork this past offseason was going back and watching New England's Tom Brady, who has the same body type, to see how Brady maintains consistent success.
Brady, with five Super Bowl titles and two league MVP awards on his resume, didn't want to take much credit.
"Well, first, giving advice to Matt Ryan, he's the MVP of the league last year -- it doesn't look like he needs advice from me," Brady said. "But I would say, in general, all quarterbacks are watching other quarterbacks. You're always trying to learn and watch how others guys get rid of the ball, run some play-action, ball-handling. All those things are important to me. You can look at other players do it.
"You want to be more efficient. You want to keep growing as a player. You never want to get stale. I would just say it's constantly evolving and changing. I've been lucky to be in it for a long time. Matt's still kind of in the middle of his career. I just see him keep getting better and better."
Heading into Sunday night's Super Bowl rematch, Brady leads the NFL with 1,959 passing yards, completing 153-of-233 passes with 13 touchdowns and two interceptions and a passer rating of 106.9. Ryan is 13th with 1,357 yards, completing 112-of-170 passes with six touchdowns and six interceptions and a passer rating of 87.3.
Although Ryan is not putting up MVP-caliber numbers through five games, Brady continues to view Ryan as an MVP-caliber player.
"I have a lot of respect for Matt," Brady said. "I really like Matt. Seeing everything he's accomplished is pretty amazing. He went to [Boston College], so I saw him when he was here. We practiced against [the Falcons]. Always watching him. ... He had an incredible year last year. I can't say enough great things about him as a leader. He's got great character. He's a great player. He's obviously great for that Falcons team."