All signs indicate that some position other than quarterback will be selected first overall in the 2022 NFL Draft, the first time that has happened since 2017 when the Browns selected edge rusher Myles Garrett.
So who will be the first quarterback to come off the board whenever it does happen? Right now, the suggested names include Pitt’s Kenny Pickett, Liberty’s Malik Willis and Ole Miss’ Matt Corral. But after leading his team to an undefeated regular season and the College Football Playoff in 2021, Desmond Ridder of Cincinnati thinks his name should be thrown into the mix.
During a sit-down interview with Tom Pelissero of NFL Network at the NFL Scouting Combine Monday, Ridder explained why he should be the first quarterback selected.
“I’m athletic, I make plays, I’m the most winningest quarterback in almost all of college football,” Ridder said. “And I think I can translate over to the NFL… At the end of the day, I’m a winner, and I don’t think anyone else is gonna tell me any different or make me feel any different.”
Ridder clearly has the confidence it takes to be a franchise quarterback, and he also has the measurables. At 6-foot-4, 215 pounds, Ridder is the prototype that NFL general managers and coaches are looking for at the position.
His talent certainly holds its own as well. He threw for 10,239 yards and 87 touchdowns over four years under center at Cincinnati. Ridder also contributed with his legs, rushing for 2,180 yards and 28 touchdowns.
And as Ridder said, he’s a winner. The Bearcats went 44-7 during his tenure, winning back-to-back AAC championships in 2020-21.
Thus far, however, analysts have shied away from mock drafting Ridder in the first round, let alone as the first quarterback selected. This leaves Ridder as one of the players with the most to prove at this year’s Combine.
To keep up with the latest from the 2022 NFL Scouting Combine, follow coverage from OutKick’s Armando Salguero.
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