Brooks' big hit on Matt Ryan in Falcons' rearview mirror

Brooks' big hit on Matt Ryan in Falcons' rearview mirror
February 13, 2013, 2:15 pm
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Matt Ryan was 30-for-42 for 396 yards and three touchdowns and an INT in the Falcons' 28-24 NFC Championship loss to the 49ers. (USA TODAY IMAGES)

San Francisco 49ers fans will never forget how Ahmad Brooks put an exclamation point on the end of the Atlanta Falcons' 2012 Super Bowl hopes.

Brooks' hit on Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan was a game-changer in the final minutes of the NFC Championship. Ryan has now healed from the sprained left AC shoulder joint he suffered thanks to Brooks, according to a report in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

After the hit, Ryan threw two incomplete passes to turn the ball over on downs. Ryan was seen leaving the team facility the day after the game with a sling around his left arm.

“He’s been working in the training room and this week he started working in the weight room,” said Falcons coach Mike Smith to the Journal-Constitution. “He’s recovered and we absolutely expect him to be well beyond 100 percent when we start our offseason program.”

Smith told the Journal-Constitution that Ryan would have played in the Super Bowl had the Falcons won the NFC Championship even though Ryan missed the Pro Bowl due to the injury.

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