This is not the best way to welcome a new colleague.
Matt Ryan, fresh off an NFL career that included four Pro Bowls and an MVP trophy, joined CBS as a game analyst for the 2023 season. He made his debut alongside play-by-play man Andrew Catalon and fellow analyst Tiki Barber to call Sunday’s game between the Minnesota Vikings and Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
There, he was met with a reminder of his lowest moment as a pro.
“We were just chopping some burgers at halftime saying this game feels like it should be 28-3 in favor of Minnesota,” Catalon said. “Why is it still 10-10?”
Yes, that’s a “28 to 3” reference shoehorned into commentary about a game that, as Catalon noted, was tied at 10-10. That’s not a random number, of course. That’s a reference to the infamous Super Bowl collapse by Ryan’s Atlanta Falcons, who led the New England Patriots, 28-3 at Super Bowl LI before going on to lose 34-28.
It’s an unfortunately defining moment for Ryan’s career that’s followed him since that fateful 2017 night. You just don’t expect to get roasted like by your broadcast partner on your first day on the job.
Ryan, as he has throughout his career, handled the moment like a pro. When asked why the game remained tied, he simply responded “turnovers” before going into a deeper analysis of the first half.