2022 Draft Coverage: Desmond Ridder

Desmond Ridder | Cincinnati 6’3” 207 lbs. | 8/31/1999 (Age 22)

Desmond Ridder was drafted 74th overall by the Atlanta Falcons, becoming the second quarterback in the 2022 NFL Draft.


Ridder had a stellar senior season for the Bearcats as a four-year starter. He threw for 3,334 yards with 30 TDs and a 65% completion percentage, with only 8 INTs. He is second in this draft class in accuracy of throws over five air yards. He had 2,180 rushing yards over his four years along with 28 rushing TDs. He also posted a 44-6 record as a starter during that time.


Ridder’s elite athleticism shows up everywhere on film. He has a very strong arm and throws really good-looking spirals. In his 2021 highlights below, he hits his first read an awful lot, but that may or may not be a bad thing given the level of competition. He shows remarkable chemistry with his main receiving weapon, Alec Pierce. He shows he can hit tight windows in these highlights, as well as putting the ball in places only his receiver can make the play.


At the combine, Ridder checked in with an impressive 40-yard dash time of 4.52. He had a 36” vertical and 10’7” broad jump, the 2nd highest ever by a QB. All three scores were the highest among QBs in this 2022 class. This led to an overall relative size-adjusted athletic score of 9.8 out of 10 which is the 18th best for QBs since 1987 out of 831 prospects. He was also seen throwing a 70-yard pass at his pro day and has tremendous arm strength.


Rapid Reaction to Draft Capital: Poor
Rapid Reaction to Landing Spot: Great

Ridder was selected with the 74th overall pick in the 2022 NFL Draft by the Atlanta Falcons. 


Ridder has seen a sharp rise in dynasty SuperFlex ADP ever since his strong combine showing. I have done three FFPC SF startup drafts in the last two months and took him in the 20th round in one and the 9th in the most recent. I was expecting him to go in the first round and the dramatic fall of QBs in this draft does not make me feel great about the draft capital here. That said, if Ridder can learn behind Mariota, the sky could be the limit with Kyle Pitts and Drake London as cornerstone offensive weapons to play within year two and beyond. I think this largely torpedoed Ridder’s redraft and best-ball value, but as only the second QB off the board, Ridder has a chance to become an incredible value play for both the Falcons and dynasty players. I expect him to go somewhere in the mid to late first round of SuperFlex drafts and for him to present an intriguing value in single-QB leagues somewhere in the late second to mid-third of rookie drafts.

Stay sharp out there and remember, you only have to be better than half your league-mates on average to be a perennial playoff team. Let’s keep balling! Look for more of my articles soon.

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