Desmond Ridder: Scouting Report. Everything You Need To Know

Desmond Ridder: Scouting Report. Everything You Need To Know
Reading Time: 3 minutes.


  • Height: 6-4 ft
  • Weight: 215 lbs
  • College: Cincinnati
  • Year: Senior
  • Position: Quarterback

Games Watched: East Carolina (2021), Alabama (2021), SMU (2021), Navy (2021)


  • Very good mid and long-range accuracy
  • Good size and strength for an NFL QB at 6 foot 4
  • A very capable runner, either on designed QB runs or just on scrambles. Making him a threat in the run game, so opposing defences need to commit at least one defender to containing him
  • Very comfortable in the pocket once in rhythm
  • Good at spreading the ball to all of his receivers
  • Accurate when throwing into tight windows up to 20 yards downfield
  • His arm strength makes him capable of making just about any throw on a football field
  • He is able to throw with good velocity, making it difficult for opposing players to intercept him
  • Good at throwing with anticipation to receivers that may not be open yet


  • Is prone to putting the ball behind a receiver, not allowing the pass catcher to make a play after the catch is made
  • Was quite reliant on screens for big plays in college
  • Should aim to throw with a bit more touch (a pass with not too much speed or height on it, in other words a pass that is just right)
  • Can hold onto the ball for too long and take sacks as a result, a very bad trait to possess when entering the NFL
  • His decision-making pre-snap can be a bit off sometimes, causing him to not see a blitz coming, or not being able to identify the coverage that the opposing defence is showing him

Projected role In The NFL: 

With the talents that he clearly possesses, I could see him starting in his first year in the league. However, I believe that if he is drafted to a team that does not need a QB right away, it would be helpful for him to sit behind a veteran QB and learn how to break down an NFL defence or how to evade pressure easily.

Best Team Fit(s): 

Detroit Lions, Atlanta Falcons, New York Giants, Pittsburgh Steelers, Houston Texans

I think that he could go as early as the end of the first round and as late as the beginning of the third round. Detroit could be a good landing spot for him as they will need a new QB as Jared Goff doesn’t seem to be the answer there. Atlanta could also look at him as the long-term successor to Matt Ryan.

Following some bad performances, Cleveland could use him as the replacement to Baker Mayfield. And despite the reports that he is returning for another season, Daniel Jones’ time in New York should be coming to an end very soon and so Desmond Ridder could be the answer to their needs at QB. Pittsburgh could draft him given Ben Roethlisberger has probably played his final game at QB for the Steelers. Finally, the Texans could pick him early in the second round if they want to move on from Davis Mills and try something new.

Pro comparison: 

In terms of a comparison, he could be viewed as a similar prospect to a player like Marcus Mariota. They both are very good athletes with the ability to make a lot of throws, but struggle in traits that translate easily to the NFL. In my opinion, his ceiling could be that of a player like Russell Wilson, despite being almost half a foot taller, due to his athletic capabilities and above average arm. But his floor could be similar to a player like Daniel Jones’, a good athlete but struggles a bit in the NFL due to some accuracy issues and issues with sensing blitzes and reading coverages.

Grading scale: 95+ Generational | 90-94, Early 1st Round | 85-90, Mid/Late 1st Round | 80-84, 2nd Round | 75-79, 3rd Round | 70-74, 4th Round | 65-69, 5/6th Round | 60-64 6/7th Round | <60, Undrafted Free Agents

Grade and Draft Value: 

86/100 – making him a late first-round to early second-round pick. This puts him at 4 in my QB rankings and 33rd overall in my big board. 


Desmond Ridder clearly has all the tools and traits to be a day 1 pick, but it is possible that a lot of NFL teams look at him and think he is a project, and so could pass him up for a more NFL-ready starter. It will be vital to see how he performs in the Senior Bowl, as a good performance there could catapult him into contention for QB1

How good of a prospect is Desmond Ridder? Let us know over on Twitter @NinetynineYards and @muffinmeep1


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Image Credit: Katie Stratman-USA TODAY Sports

Video Credit: Breakshot Media YouTube

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