Arthur Smith Weighs in on Possibility of Desmond Ridder Starting Week 1

Devon Platana
Atlanta Falcons head coach Arthur Smith weighs in on the possibility of QB Desmond Ridder starting in Week 1 of the 2022 NFL season.
Atlanta Falcons head coach Arthur Smith weighs in on the possibility of QB Desmond Ridder starting in Week 1 of the 2022 NFL season. / Kareem Elgazzar/The Enquirer / USA TODAY
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The Atlanta Falcons potentially found their quarterback of the future on Day 2 of the 2022 NFL Draft when they selected Cincinnati gunslinger Desmond Ridder with the 74th overall pick.

Ridder is an exciting prospect with the tools to be an NFL starter one day, but fans have been wondering if that day could be as soon as Week 1 of the 2022 season. However, head coach Arthur Smith doesn't think that it's the 22-year-old's job just yet.

Desmond Ridder Falcons News

When asked about the possibility of Ridder starting in Week 1 following Day 2 of the 2022 NFL Draft, Smith said that they'll be rolling with Marcus Mariota "for now" due to his veteran status. However, the Falcons coach didn't exactly rule his rookie QB out just yet, adding "As with any position, the best guy is going to play."

The Falcons signed Mariota to a two-year, $18.75 million deal back in March after they moved on from former franchise QB Matt Ryan. The 28-year-old has served as a backup QB in Las Vegas over the last two seasons and looked good whenever given an opportunity to play.

On the flip side, it's hard not to like what Ridder brings to the table. The reigning back-to-back AAC Offensive Player of the Year is coming off a campaign that saw him record career-highs in completions (251), passing yards (3,334) and touchdown passes (30) in 14 games.

The Falcons are fortunate enough to have promising young pass-catchers to pair alongside Ridder in the form of sophomore tight end Kyle Pitts and rookie wideout Drake London, who Atlanta drafted eighth overall on Thursday.

Add veteran Swiss army knife Cordarrelle Patterson into the mix and it might be in the Falcons' best interest to give Ridder a start or two at some point next season.

Oddsmakers are also taking notice of the possibility of Ridder starting next season. FanDuel Sportsbook is currently giving the Falcons rookie +1400 odds (T-No. 12) to be named the 2022 NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year.

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Devon Platana is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Devon Platana also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username PepeSilvia0. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in their articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.

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