The PFF team discusses the Atlanta Falcons selection of Cincinnati QB Desmond Ridder in the 3rd Round of the 2022 NFL Draft.
- I have to stop myself here, because we have a quarterback off the board.
- The Atlanta Falcons are on the clock, and they have selected Seth's QB1--
- --Desmond Ridder.
- Not to the Falcons.
- Desmond Ridder to the Atlan-- wait, why is that not a good pick?
- Well, because I--
- With your wide receiver, one Drake London, man.
- Yeah, no, I'm going to become a Falcons fan because I like all their picks.
- You have to now.
- And I don't know if I could do it. Desmond Ridder, to me, is the most polished quarterback. He does everything you're, quote unquote, "supposed to do" from the quarterback perspective. I understand that some people can look at his accuracy and think it's not good. I think it's a little better than he gets credit for. However, I think he is the best in this class at processing. And what I mean by that is finding the routes that are open with his eyes and getting to them in an efficient manner.
He ran really fast at the combine. They didn't really use him like that at Cincinnati. I think you can add some more zone read stuff for him, maybe quarterback power, maybe, but I think you can do that.
He's just-- the tools are close to being elite-elite, but not quite, which is why he falls. I didn't think he would fall this much.
- But obviously, like I, he's my-- between him and Malik Willis, they're both my QB1A/QB1B.
- I thought he was the most [? NFR-rated ?] quarterback in this class.
- It's not even close, truthfully.
- And so 6' 3", 211, he is skinny. He's a little skinnier dude. And yes, he is athletic. He ran a 4.52, but he's not really a runner. Patrick Mahomes can escape better than he can.
Over the course of his entire career, he broke as many tackles as Sam Howell did last year. He is not that kind of guy. But if you leave him unblocked on a zone read, out the back door, he's gone. He can actually fly. He's actually a very--
--Mariota, who was like that. Leave him space, he can go, but not a guy who's going to be a focal point of your run game.
And what I like about him, coaches rave about him. A big culture guy. He is going to work his ass off. And you saw it. Every single year at Cincinnati, he improved, and became from a fringe sort of prospect to who he is now, and played behind a bad offensive line last year, and had the highest grade against pressure of any of these guys in this top group of quarterbacks.
So the thing I worry about is the high-end plays on tape, just not a ton. The going above and beyond, I don't see a ton of. And the accuracy, he missed like seven balls at his pro day. And actually at his pro day, when he uncorked one of the deep balls, a player I will not name said, why did he never do that for us? Because there wasn't a lot of that, truthfully, on his tape over the years.
- Yeah, I think the deep ball stuff is interesting, because I do think it's a-- I'm getting too-- I'm going to psychoanalyze him right now-- I do think it's a depth perception thing. I think I had that problem when I throw footballs. It's like you're trying your best not to overthrow someone so hard that you underthrow, because I think he has the arm strength.
- When he can--
- That's OK. We're trying to [INAUDIBLE].
- Yeah, and it's not the issue with the arm strength, it's more in that deep ball thing. Can he overthrow people and have them-- receivers run underneath the ball? I think when he throws in breaking routes at 20 yards, at 15 yards, I think the ball gets there fast, it's just like, like you mentioned, it's the other stuff.
- The accuracy-- so we were debating on Twitter a couple of days ago about his accuracy. And I think you can look at PFF numbers and say he's accurate or you could say he's inaccurate. It depends on how you look at it. He missed a ton of throws, just pure misses, just pure uncatchable passes, right? It was the first throw against Notre Dame, a little 5-yard out, he sails it by 10 yards, right? The misses are glaring. But when he throws the ball somewhat near the frame, it's really nice and it's good. And so he's got a high accuracy percentage and a high missed percentage all at the same time.
And so is that footwork? Is that development? Is that the continued development that you're talking about, Mike? The fact that he's working with Jordan Palmer on his movement skills and all that stuff, do you factor that in as far as player evaluation? All I know is I'll take that in the third round [INAUDIBLE].
- Everyone works with Jordan Palmer nowadays.
- Yeah, he's-- well, but you just-- he has Josh Allen, so it's like everybody is going to become Josh Allen. All I know is if you're the Falcons, and you got a receiver, and you got a linebacker, and you got an edge, all guys that were good value plays, and you just take a shot at quarterback, and let him sit behind Marcus Mariota for a year, love it for the Falcons. Take that chance.