Heading into the 2023 season, Calvin Ridley is one of the most intriguing veterans in dynasty football. After a stellar 2020 season where Ridley finished as the WR5, he was seen as an elite dynasty asset. Unfortunately, many issues led Ridley to play in five games since. This leaves the question of where Ridley should be valued in dynasty football.
On the Rise: 2018-2019
Ridley was a phenomenal prospect coming out of Alabama and went to the Atlanta Falcons at pick 26. Even though the Falcons already had Julio Jones and Mohamed Sanu, both were 29, and the team needed a long-term solution at wide receiver. Despite being the third option, Ridley put up 12.9 PPG in his first year.
The following season with Sanu playing in only seven games, Ridley became the number two target. Ridley continued to improve and averaged an impressive 15.2 PPG in year two.
The Breakout: 2020
After seeing improvement in his first two years, Ridley finally got his chance to be the number option. This was because Jones struggled with injuries the whole year, which limited him to nine games. With this improved target share, Ridley dominated.
Ridley avenged 18.8 PPG and put up a 90-1374-9 season. This made Ridley the WR5 of the year. After his breakout season, Ridley was now valued as a top-12 dynasty wide receiver.
The Downfall: 2021-2022
With expectations sky-high for Ridley, things started to go wrong. In 2021 Ridley was averaging 14.2 PPG through five games when he announced he would be taking time off due to his mental health. Starting to feel the pressure around him, Ridley felt it was in his best interest to sit out the rest of the year.
Heading into the 2022 season, it seemed like Ridley was due for a bounce-back year. However, things got even worse. The NFL caught Ridley gambling during his time away, leading to a year-long suspension. This dropped Ridley’s dynasty value to an all-time low; many thought he was finished.
During his time away, Ridley was traded to the Jacksonville Jaguars for a fifth and conditional fourth-round pick. After a breakout season from the Jaguar’s offense and a horrendous year by the Falcons, this looked like the best-case scenario for Ridley. According to Dynasty Nerds ADP, this hype has led Ridley to have an ADP of WR29 in dynasty startups.
Shocker: The #Falcons are trading WR Calvin Ridley to the #Jaguars, sources say, in exchange for complex draft compensation that can be worth at maximum a 2023 5th rounder and a 2024 2nd rounder. Ridley is suspended through at least the 2022 season. pic.twitter.com/Zk6Yb7U5F3— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) November 1, 2022
This is even though Ridley is turning 29 this season and hasn’t played an entire season of football since 2020. There are a ton of red flags surrounding Ridley’s profile, starting with his drop-off in efficiency when he was on the field in 2021. In 2020 Ridley had 91 YPG, which dropped to 56.2 YPG in 2021.
On top of this, Ridley may not even be the WR1 in this offense. Christian Kirk had a great season last year, averaging 14.2 PPG. The Jaguars also have Evan Engram, Travis Etienne, and Zay Jones eating into the team’s target share.
Sell Ridley Now!
If you have Ridley, I would sell him immediately. If you can get a first-round pick for him, you should do that deal in a heartbeat. I would much rather have Jahan Dotson, Zay Flowers, Marquise Brown, and Amari Cooper, who are all drafted behind Ridley.
Ridley is one of fantasy football’s biggest risks, and I don’t see him panning out. With the combination of his age, time away, and the target competition in his offense, I’m out on Calvin Ridley in dynasty football.
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