Heinicke said his goal is to be "the best backup I can" behind fellow Falcons quarterback Desmond Ridder, Josh Kendall of The Athletic reports. "They drafted [Ridder] high for a reason," Heinicke added Thursday afternoon.
What it means:
The catch is that Atlanta didn't draft Ridder all that early (74th overall), while Heinicke's two-year, $14 million contract ($6.32 million guaranteed) makes him one of the better-compensated backups in the league. The team was clear with Heinicke about Ridder being the starter, which figures to carry into Week 1, but that doesn't necessarily mean the second-year pro will have a lot of leeway if he struggles once the season starts. Heinicke's stats from Washington -- 64.0 completion rate, 7.0 YPA, 33:21 TD:INT, 12-11-1 record -- give him a strong argument to be viewed among the two or three best backup quarterbacks in the league.