Cleveland Browns Quarterback No. 3 to watch: Desmond Ridder, University of Cincinnati
Desmond Ridder has been a popular name amongst Browns fans in the buildup to the NFL draft. The proximity of him being in Ohio and the fact that Cincinnati made to the National Collegiate Football Playoff Semi-Final Game against Alabama has put Ridder’s work on full display.
He had a good season with the Bearcats as he threw for 3,334 yards and 30 touchdowns and his team went undefeated until the loss to Alabama. Ridder doesn’t blow you away with his athleticism, but he’s considered a well-rounded, game-manager type of quarterback. Where have we heard that before? In the game against Alabama, he went 17 for 32 for only 144 yards.
Like many of these college quarterbacks entering the draft, he’s been projected all over the board, as high as the first round and as low as the third or fourth round. As mentioned before, the Browns have the picks in those later rounds to take a player like Ridder.
His height is a nice advantage too on draft day as he stands at 6-4. He can also escape the pocket and run. He had 28 rushing touchdowns in his time with the Bearcats. Ridder’s ability to throw the deep ball is always a real plus as teams have been evaluating him.
This past week Ridder has been practicing at the Senior Bowl and by some accounts, as reported by Adam Beasley from Pro Football Network, he’s had a difficult start to his time there as he threw a few passes over the intended targets and also struggled with fumbling the snap. All these types of situations are definitely being analyzed under a microscope.
The strengths certainly outweigh the weaknesses for Ridder, and I’d expect to see him drafted earlier rather than later. What Cleveland decides to do is hard to pinpoint right now but the Bearcat quarterback would certainly seem like a good pick-up by some NFL team.