The Atlanta Falcons would like to sign Matt Ryan to a new contract prior to the 2013 season, reports NFL.com's Chris Wesseling. Ryan has one year left on his original deal and the Falcons want to lock him down before he becomes a free agent. On Thursday, general manager Thomas Dimitroff said (via Wesseling), "I'm hoping we can agree to something going into the season."
Ryan will likely receive a larger contract than Joe Flacco signed with the Ravens this offseason. Estimates for Ryan's new contract place it between $21 and $23 million per year. Flacco and Ryan both entered the NFL as first-round draft picks in 2008 and their careers are often compared to one another. Flacco has more postseason success, and now a Super Bowl, but Ryan has posted better regular season numbers throughout his career.
The Falcons began freeing up cap space to sign Ryan to a new deal on Thursday, when they released starting right tackle Tyson Clabo. Ryan is currently scheduled to make $10 million in 2013.