Three players the Falcons could replace Calvin Ridley with
Something of a rollercoaster option, but with Ridley out indefinitely, the Falcons need legitimate WR1 level talent. Golden Tate might not have had the most productive time in New York, but it’s undeniable that he was capable of performing in that role. At 33 years old, and with a limited amount of options on the Falcons roster, it should be an opportunity Tate would thrive in.
Tate made his name in Seattle, enjoying a prominent role on their offense, and playing a key role in their Super Bowl run of 2013. That production saw him offered big money with the Detroit Lions, where he spent the majority of his career as their WR1. Since 2017, however, he bounced from the Eagles to the Giants, until he was ultimately released earlier this year.
Of the names suggested so far, Tate probably offers the closest to Ridley in terms of a skillset. An excellent route runner, with the ability to elude the eyes of defenses with his footwork, Tate would step into the hole left by #18. That isn’t necessarily what the Falcons need long-term, but we’re not really looking to the long term with this sort of pick-up. A plug-in and play option that Arthur Smith can move inside on occasion, and play on the boundaries during others. Versatility is the key with this offense, and Tate offers that.
What he doesn’t offer, however, is subtlety. His time with the Giants was tumultuous and ended with him basically begging to be cut on the field. Unlike in New York, however, he would be getting an experienced quarterback in Matt Ryan to work with, who would no doubt be capable of getting the ball to him far more consistently than Daniel Jones was. If they can make it work financially, Tate would be an astute pick up.