0

Falcons beat Titans 17-3 in Ryan's first preseason start

ATLANTA - One start, one win for Matt Ryan.

Ryan, making his first preseason start, opened the second half with a touchdown pass to give Atlanta the lead and the Falcons beat the Tennessee Titans 17-3 on Friday night.

Ryan, the third pick in the draft, continued his bid to start as a rookie. Ryan completed 15 of 21 passes for 102 yards with a 1-yard scoring pass to another rookie, Harry Douglas, and no interceptions.

Ryan called his debut as a starter 'a lot of fun.'

'I thought we did a lot of good things as an offense, but I made a couple of poor throws toward the end of the first half,' Ryan said. 'We were able to come out and score at the beginning of the third quarter, and that was a good way to end it.'

Thomas Brown, a rookie out of Georgia, scored on a 9-yard run with 3:22 left to add to the lead.

Ryan outplayed Tennessee starter Vince Young, the No. 3 pick in 2006. Young was 9 of 18 passing for 102 yards and an interception.

Ryan played the full first half, completing 8 of 11 passes for 47 yards, but he couldn't produce a touchdown drive.

The biggest letdown for the Ryan-led offense came late in the first half.

Adam Jennings' 38-yard punt return gave the Falcons (1-2 preseason) the ball at the Titans' 16 with 1:15 left. Ryan's passes for Laurent Robinson and Roddy White were too high to be caught in the end zone.

Jason Elam ended the disappointing possession by missing a 33-yard field goal attempt, leaving the score 3-3 at halftime.