Falcons trade Desmond Ridder to Cardinals

Jan 7, 2024; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA;  Atlanta Falcons quarterback Desmond Ridder (9) during
Jan 7, 2024; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; Atlanta Falcons quarterback Desmond Ridder (9) during / Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports

After two seasons in Atlanta, Desmond Ridder is no longer a Falcon.

Per NFL Network's Ian Rapoport:

Sources: Rondale Moore is going to the Falcons in exchange for Desmond Ridder.

Ridder was selected 74th overall in the 2022 NFL Draft, and was designated the quarterback of the future by owner Arthur Blank and former head coach Arthur Smith.

Despite those high expectations, success never truly materialized for Ridder as a Falcon, and in two seasons, there wasn't enough improvement to indicate that he was a player the franchise wanted to build around. In 19 games in two seasons, he completed 64 percent of his throws, compiled 3,544 yards, and threw just 14 touchdowns to 12 interceptions. He also fumbled the ball 15 times.

Young players make mistakes, but there was little to no indication deep into 2023 that Ridder was in any way learning from those mistakes. Because of that, he's headed to Arizona.

Falcons get a playmaker in return

Clearly, the Cardinals see something in Ridder that they feel they can build upon, proven by their willingness to part with Rondale Moore, a speedy playmaking receiver with lots of untapped potential.

Moore is a former 2nd-round pick out of Purdue, and while he's shown some serious playmaking ability at times, he hasn't totally lived up to his high expectations during his three years in the league. This situation in Atlanta, however, could prove to be a breakout year for the wideout.

During Moore's time in Arizona, the QB situation has been inconsistent, and the offense has failed to find a real rhythm for big stretches of the season.

Now, Moore is in an offense that features a good offensive line, a strong running game, a proven quarterback, multiple tremendous receiving weapons, and all while he is WR3. Defenses will have a lot to cover when they play the Falcons, and this will likely creates openings in droves for a player like Moore.

This is a deal that benefits both sides tremendously. The Falcons get a perfect player to fill one of the few gaps left on the their offense, and Ridder gets a fresh start in a place where he'll get to relax and develop without the weight of being the franchise QB on his shoulders.