Ryan laments fourth-quarter sack after Falcons' Super Bowl collapse

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Matt Ryan bemoaned a crucial fourth-quarter sack after the Atlanta Falcons surrendered a 25-point lead in their Super Bowl LI defeat to the New England Patriots.

The Falcons led 28-3 in the third quarter in Houston and appeared to be on their way to a first Super Bowl title.

But Tom Brady led the Patriots back in scarcely believable fashion, New England completing the largest comeback in Super Bowl history when James White went over for his third touchdown of the game to a seal a 34-28 overtime triumph.

With the Patriots gaining momentum at 28-20 down, Ryan appeared to have the Falcons in position to stem the tide and at least kick a field goal to extend the lead to 11 points.

However, he was sacked by Trey Flowers and a holding penalty on Jake Matthews stymied that drive, leaving Ryan and the Falcons to wonder what might have been.

"There's nothing you can really say, tough loss obviously, very disappointing, very close to getting done what we wanted to get done but it's hard to find words tonight," Ryan said in his post-game media conference.

"I don't think it was one thing or another, just a couple of things here and there that got us off schedule and we weren't able to overcome that.

"I thought we had the right mindset, I thought we played the right way, incredible effort, just fell a little bit short."

On the sack by Flowers, he added: "I wish I could have done a better job trying to get rid of that ball, that was a big drive for us to turn the field and get the ball down in field-goal range and to not come away with points on that drive was very disappointing.

"It'll sting tonight for sure. It's not easy when you've come this far, didn't get the result that you want.

"We'll have to move past it, come together and hopefully put ourselves right back in this position. We've got a young football team and a good football team so hopefully we can put ourselves in that position again next year."