With the Falcons out on Lamar Jackson, it looks like they’ll go one of two ways when it comes to their quarterback situation. They’ll either ride it out with Desmond Ridder and bring in a veteran journeyman to compete with him in the preseason, or they’ll draft another quarterback in the first round.
I tend to believe they will go with the former. Ridder performed admirably in his mini-audition, getting better in each start. He also possesses the intangibles Terry Fontenot covets in his quarterback. I think there’s a good chance Ridder proves to be a starting caliber quarterback in the NFL, even if his ceiling isn’t nearly as high as some of the quarterback prospects that are set to go in the first round. However, outside analysts aren’t nearly as high on Ridder.
In PFF’s quarterback rankings from earlier this offseason, Ridder clocked in at 35th overall. And more recently, Fanduel ranked him as the 15th best quarterback in the NFC, behind Sam Howell, Jordan Love, and PJ Walker.
The disrespect in these rankings… pic.twitter.com/SrdJPZJARH
— SportsTalkATL.com (@SportsTalkATL) March 10, 2023
I’m not going to say Ridder earned anything other than the opportunity to compete for the starting job in 2023. There’s a reason Arthur Smith and Terry Fontenot have been non-committal regarding his standing going into next season. We didn’t see enough to make conclusive judgements.
However, we’ve seen even less from Jordan Love and Sam Howell. I’m not sure how either of them could bee seen in a better light than Ridder, and PJ Walker is nothing more than a backup quarterback in this league. Ridder wasn’t anything to write home about in his four starts, but he was in command of the offense, didn’t turn the ball over, and led the team to a couple of wins. He’s better than the 15th best quarterback in the NFC, which features a number of unproven commodities at QB.
Photographer: David J. Griffin/Icon Sportswire
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