Desmond Ridder is 3-2 as a starting quarterback for the Falcons, dating back to the final four games of the 2022 campaign and the season opener last week against the Panthers.
The third-round pick hasn’t had a breakout performance just yet, only eclipsing 200 yards twice while failing to reach 100 yards against the Saints last year. He’s still developing and should be given a bit of grace, but they don’t say NFL stands for Not For Long for no reason.
Ridder has to show some progress throughout the season or the Falcons will be quarterback-hunting this offseason. He does some things extremely well, most of which are intangibly based. However, one notable metric from his tangible game is the lack of turnovers.
In five starts, he’s yet to throw an interception, even though he’s had several turnover-worthy throws, including last week against the Panthers. The box score doesn’t say “almost” an interception, though. In fact, he could break a league record on Sunday if he continues his streak.
If Desmond Ridder doesn’t throw a pick against the Packers, he’ll become the first quarterback to throw zero picks in his first six starts since starts were first tracked in 1950, according to ESPN. Rookie quarterbacks and turnovers go together like peas and carrots, so this is a notable feat.
Listen, I am on the fence about Desmond Ridder. He’s got to show me something in 2022 to earn another opportunity in 2023. He earned the team’s trust this offseason and deserves the reins for the time being; however, you’d be a fool to give him your blind loyalty.
This Falcons roster is talented enough to punch their ticket to the postseason, something that hasn’t been done since 2017. It’s time for this new regime to produce some results, and it’s not clear yet where we finish the 2023 season at quarterback.
Photographer: Rich von Biberstein/Icon Sportswire