Falcons Owner Arthur Blank Calls Second-Year QB Desmond Ridder The Team’s Signal-Caller Of The Future 

The Atlanta Falcons are entering year three of the Arthur Smith era as the team’s head coach. Smith, the former Tennessee Titans offensive coordinator who helped guide the Titans to within one game of the Super Bowl in 2019, is trying to rebuild a Falcons team that is talented but short on experience. 

One of the key pieces of the Falcons rebuild is second-year signal caller Desmond Ridder. The former Cincinnati Bearcats star has been given the keys to the franchise, and it’s safe to say he has a believer in team owner Arthur Blank.

Blank Likes Ridder At The Helm

During an interview on Tuesday, Blank talked about Ridder, and how he views him long term.

“I like our young quarterback, Blank said of Ridder. “People look at just the four games last year and they say, well, based on those four games, but he really progressed from the time he came on campus here after he we drafted, had a good camp, and he’s been a strong leader since he’s shown up here. Continued to develop. Worked well with Marcus Mariota last year, learned a lot from Marcus. He’s a learner, and he’s got a lot of humility. 

“As the year progressed, he had an opportunity to play, and I think he played at a very competitive level. Those last four games each game seemed to be a little bit better. So, we feel pretty strongly that he’s going to be our quarterback of the future. We’ve got to play games and we’ve got to see, but we feel good about him.”

Strong words from Blank, who went from the dynamic Michael Vick to 2016 NFL MVP Matt Ryan under center. While Ridder is capable he’s got some big shoes to fill in regard to those two former Falcons quarterbacks. 

Ridder Will Have Plenty Of Help

In four starts last season Ridder didn’t exactly light up the stat sheet. The 2022 third-round pick went 73-for-115 for 708 yards, two touchdowns and zero interceptions. The numbers may not jump out at you, but the one that does is the zero picks in four games, that’s huge for any quarterback, but especially a rookie. 

Coming into the 2023 season, Ridder will be flanked by the running back duo of 2023 first round pick Bijan Robinson, and the Falcons leading rusher in 2022, Tyler Allgeiet who rusher for over 1,000-yards with a 4.9 yards per carry average.

He’ll also have some huge targets to throw it to  in 6-foot-4 Drake London, 6-foot-4 Mack Hollind and 6-foot-6 tight end Kyle Pitts. Blank expects results this season, and in a very winnable NFC South he just may get them. 

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