Falcons WR Calvin Ridley is INACTIVE for today's game vs. the Panthers due to a personal matter. He also missed Week 5 for the same reason. Ridley's absence leaves Atlanta with WRs Russell Gage, Olamide Zaccheaus and Tajae Sharpe atop the depth chart. TE Kyle Pitts and RB Cordarrelle Patterson should also play even bigger roles in the passing game.
The NFL has suspended Falcons WR Calvin Ridley for at least the 2022 season for gambling on NFL games while he was away from the team last year, according to multiple reports. The league says Ridley placed bets during a 5-day window in November. He will not be allowed to apply for reinstatement until February 2023. Atlanta now has a large hole to fill at wideout without the benefit of whatever the team might have gotten back in a potential Ridley trade. With Russell Gage headed for free agency, the Falcons' passing game has significant questions to answer.
Scott Bair of the Falcons’ official site writes that “there isn’t a lot to go on at this point” regarding a possible Calvin Ridley trade. Ridley’s last game came in Week 7. Then he missed the remainder of the season for mental health reasons, and no substantial updates have surfaced since. Bair surmises that a Round 2 pick would be “fair” compensation — and it seems reasonable. Ridley, 27, is slated to enter a contract year in the fall. Teammate Russell Gage is set to enter free agency next month, so it's quite possible this Atlanta WR corps undergoes major change.
Falcons WR Calvin Ridley is eligible to come off the non-football injury list this week, but HC Arthur Smith had no update on his status on Monday. We'll continue to monitor the situation, but fantasy owners shouldn't be planning on having Ridley in Week 12 lineups.
The Falcons placed WR Calvin Ridley on the non-football injury list. That requires him to miss at least the next 3 weeks, making Week 12 his earliest potential return. We'd still try to keep Ridley stashed on fantasy benches for now.
In a statement posted on social media, Falcons WR Calvin Ridley wrote, "I need to step away from football at this time and focus on my mental wellbeing." Ridley has been scratched in 2 of Atlanta's last 3 games. It's unclear when he'll return to the game. We'd recommend keeping him stashed on fantasy benches for now.
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