ESPN ranked the production for each of the NFL’s rookie classes for 2022, and I was surprised how long it took me to find the Atlanta Falcons.
Drake London finished third in yardage among rookies and first in grade by Pro Football Focus. Tyler Allgeier set a Falcons’ rookie record with 1,035 yards. Desmond Ridder went 2-2 at quarterback without throwing an interception to close out the season.
Arnold Ebiketie played in 16 games, had 2.5 sacks and 31 pressures, and Troy Andersen played in 16 games, started five and finished the season with 69 tackles.
So it was a little surprising to see that ESPN ranked the Falcons’ rookie class at No. 13.
Fifth-round pick Tyler Allgeier was arguably the most valuable running back from the entire 2022 rookie class. He finished with over 1,000 yards on the ground and ranked fifth in Football Outsiders’ rushing DYAR metric. First-round wide receiver Drake London played in all 17 games and finished the year with 72 catches for 866 yards and four touchdowns. Quarterback Desmond Ridder started the last four games with a reasonable 49.8 QBR.
On the defensive side of the ball, the Falcons got 2.5 sacks and 31 pressures from edge rusher Arnold Ebiketie, while undrafted defensive tackle Timmy Horne started five of the final six games of the season. — Aaron Schatz and Alex Vigderman, ESPN
It’s arguable if the Arthur Smith and the Falcons waited too long to start Ridder this season, but even the most cynical of Falcons fans are pleased with the production they saw from general manager Terry Fontenot’s second draft class.