Falcons’ Desmond Ridder Receives Highest Rookie QB Rating in Madden


Getty Desmond Ridder #9 of the Cincinnati Bearcats.

Cincinnati product Desmond Ridder may have not been the first quarterback to go off of the board during the 2022 NFL Draft, however, he’s the highest-rated rookie QB in the league, according to Madden 23.

Madden recently dropped their pre-season Madden 23 ratings and both Desmond and Malik Willis scored higher than Kenny Pickett, who was the first selected back in round 1.

Here’s a look at the top Madden ratings for the 2022 QB class:

70 Desmond Ridder Atlanta Falcons
69 Malik Willis Tennessee Titans
68 Kenny Pickett Pittsburgh Steelers
68 Matt Corral Carolina Panthers
67 Sam Howell Washington Commanders

Of course, the scores will move as the season starts but it’s nice to see someone high on the rookie QB––even if it is just a video game.

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PFF Calls Ridder ‘Most-NFL Ready’ QB

In a mock draft released by Pro Football Focus on April 4 ahead of the draft, PFF had initially pegged the Falcons to select the first quarterback of the draft, taking Ridder at No. 8 overall.

Instead, Pittsburgh’s Kenny Pickett was the first QB to go off of the draft board at No. 23 overall to the Steelers, making Ridder the second to go.

Nonetheless, PFF had singled out Desmond in their mock by calling him the most “NFL-ready” QB in the 2022 class:

Arthur Smith’s offense is a dream fit for Ridder, the most NFL-ready quarterback in this class.

The Cincinnati product displayed high-level processing and flawlessly executed the Bearcats’ pure passing concepts this past season. He got through his progressions, consistently finding the right receiver, and had nine games without a turnover-worthy play this past season — the best mark in the FBS.

Ridder also ranked third among the top seven quarterback prospects in accurate-pass percentage on throws beyond the line of scrimmage. So, while it may not be perfect, his accuracy is not a liability.

Ridder has risen up NFL boards into the first-round conversation after lighting up the Senior Bowl and combine, and he’s my top prospect at the position.

But PFF isn’t the only one who believes Ridder is the readiest QB to start at the next level this year, Ridder––himself––believes it too.

“I played five years, so I have the most experience,” Ridder said at the NFL Combine. “I’ve played in many situations over my five years at Cincinnati. I feel like I am the most-ready prospect mentally and athletically.”

As a four-year starter for the Bearcats, Ridder tossed for a total of 10,239 yards with 87 touchdowns and 28 interceptions in 50 career games.

Ridder Inks Rookie Deal

Ridder made things official with the Falcons on July 19 by signing a 4-year rookie contract, which has him slated to make $5,362,962 including a $1,080,336 signing bonus.

He was the last of the Falcons’ 2022 draft class to sign their deal.

On the same day, all of the Falcons’ rookies reported to training camp. The veterans will report on July 26.

Atlanta currently plans to start veteran rookie Marcus Mariota while Ridder sits back and learns from him. However, that plan could change depending on how well both Mariota and Ridder perform during camp.



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