Atlanta Falcons quarterback Desmond Ridder celebrates with teammates after a touchdown against the Green Bay Packers - Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports Tyler Boyd
Atlanta Falcons News

Bleacher Report Coming Around to Desmond Ridder

Quarterback Desmond Ridder hasn’t lit up the box score in the first two weeks of the 2023 NFL season. But the Atlanta Falcons are 2-0 for the first time since 2017.

As a result, Bleacher Report’s NFL staff is coming around to Ridder as the future behind center in Atlanta.

In an article that detailed the top takeaways from Week 2 in the NFL, the BR NFL staff claimed that “Ridder doesn’t need flashy numbers to help guide the Falcons to the playoffs.”

“Ridder arguably should’ve finished the game with three interceptions, but when the Falcons needed game-winning plays, he answered the call,” the BR staff wrote.

“Ridder went 19-of-32 passing for 237 yards, one touchdown and one interception, but he’s a true gamer, which isn’t shown on the stat sheet.”

Is there a greater compliment for a quarterback? Yes, every NFL team wants to have the signal caller with the strong arm, big frame, athletic ability and high IQ. But how that quarterback performs with the game on the line is an underrated trait.

Quite frankly, it’s what made Tom Brady one of the greatest quarterbacks of all time.

With the Falcons trailing by 12 in the fourth quarter, Ridder made some terrific throws. He completed 6 of 8 passes for 86 yards.

Ridder also showcased his athletic ability with 17 rushing yards and a touchdown on the ground.

The Falcons never received that kind of fourth quarter performance from Marcus Mariota. Matt Ryan didn’t have a fourth quarter like that in 2021 either.

Before Sunday, the last time the Falcons erased a two-score deficit in the fourth quarter was 2019 against the San Francisco 49ers.

There’s plenty for Ridder to improve. There are a lot of aspects of his game that need work. But he’s also giving the Falcons reasons to be confident he’s the answer behind center.

Bleacher Report’s NFL staff now seems to agree.