An easy defense can be made for Desmond Ridder when you look at the Atlanta Falcons pass protection through the first three games of the season. It is hard to expect any quarterback to put up big numbers or consistent drives when on your second or third step dropping back you already have pressure in your face often from more than one side.
However, there is also no defense for the ugly throws and terrible misses that we've seen from Desmond each of the last two weeks. The quarterback redeemed himself against the Packers with two late impressive drives to fuel a comeback. But the same cannot be said for an ugly Lions road loss.
Ridder deserves to continue to start and be given every chance to be evaluated and prove to be a franchise option. However, it is only fair to point out that seven games into Ridder's career there isn't one start to be excited about.
Yes, there are comebacks and impressive flashes for the young quarterback but not one full game of NFL throws and production. Atlanta has a roster to win now and needs very little from Desmond Ridder to make the playoffs and be an interesting team this season.
Still, if you're Atlanta Ridder's stock is moving in the wrong direction after this game. While the second-year quarterback needs patience and continued chances there will come a point this season to make a change if improvements aren't quickly made.
Now isn't the time to even consider making a change but to fully give Desmond Ridder the full playbook and let him sink or swim. The sense of urgency for this team doesn't allow for a full season of performances as Atlanta saw on Sunday.
For now, however, the bigger concern should be fixing the pass protection issues and focusing their offense on establishing the run and taking pressure off Desmond over the next couple of weeks. If the quarterback is still unable to settle in and show improvement and is missing the layups then it will be time to have a serious discussion.
At 2-1 with an easy schedule ahead after the Jaguars game the Falcons will give Ridder every chance to prove he isn't the answer.