|Posted on July 12, 2019 at 8:00 PM|
Former Falcons wide receiver Brian Finneran was an All NFL Europe stand out, spending time in Seattle and Philadelphia before finding a long-term spot in Atlanta. He led the Falcons in receptions, receiving yards and receiving touchdowns in 2002 as they made their way into the postseason, knocking off Brett Favre and the Packers in Green Bay. During the 2000s, Finneran was an integral part of Atlanta's offense under Michael Vick. He was also present for the beginning of Matt Ryan's career. I caught up with Brian to talk about his journey as a 10-year NFL veteran, where he'd rank Ryan amongst the all-time greats and what he's up to in his post-NFL career.
Ryan: 10 years in the NFL, 135 games all together. If you had to pick 1 game that best represented who you were as a football player, which game would it be and why?
Brian: "That’s hard man. One game? Maybe at Miami in 05, I think. Had 8 catches, made some nice plays and had a touchdown. [I] also played special teams [and] may have had a tackle? [I] forced a fumble after Vick threw a pick. Big time hustle play. Kind of did a bit of everything that game."
Ryan: What did you consider to be your “welcome to the NFL” moment?
Brian: "Welcome to the NFL moment? There were plenty. At Seahawks training camp, [I] felt out of place and struggled to find my game, got cut! Eagles in 1999, dropped a big pass in my first game playing vs. Arizona, then got cut a couple of weeks later."
Ryan: I’ve said since the end of the 2018 season that Matt Ryan is a Top-30 quarterback in the history of pro football. Fair take?
Brian: "Matt Ryan is special and should probably be Top-20 [all-time]. I think he will be when he is all done playing. I could go on and on about Matt."
Ryan: What made you the happiest during your time in Atlanta?
Brian: "Happiest? Winning, plain and simple. Anyway, anyhow. Wins made me the happiest and maybe scoring a touchdown or two."
Ryan: What are you up to these days?
Brian: "I am on the radio with 680 The Fan in Atlanta. Show called 'The Front Row'! (www.680thefan.com)"
Follow Brian Finneran on Twitter: @BFinn86
Follow Ryan Michael on Twitter: @theryanmichael