Not perfection, but Falcons’ Calvin Ridley already up to speed

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Calvin Ridley has heard nothing but praise for months, but the Atlanta Falcons rookie wide receiver realizes he’s not immune to criticism.

Such was the case following Saturday’s preseason loss at Jacksonville. Ridley had his first taste of NFL adversity when he dropped a pass from Matt Ryan that would have been a first down right in front of Jaguars cornerback Jalen Ramsey. Ridley also had another play that went through his hands although defensive back Tyler Patmon made a good play on the ball.

Falcons coach Dan Quinn wasn’t pleased.

“That’s part of ‘Tell the Truth [Monday],”‘ Quinn said. “Nobody escapes that. … That’s part of the process that we go through to say, ‘Hey man, we expect you to 8

“I’m sure he doesn’t like having that play in front of the rest of his teammates in the team meeting, just like Matt [Ryan] doesn’t on a play or anyone else.”

“But I think to be a true team, you have to show all the examples: the ones that he really lights him up good and the ones that he had a drop,” Quinn continued on about Ridley. “Last week, he was on his way to becoming the next Pro Bowl rookie receiver, and then he had a drop and [the media] brings it up. Welcome to the NFL.”nfl nike

Quinn isn’t overly concerned, though. He knows his first-round draft pick won’t sulk over such a mishap.

“He’s really detailed and a really prideful guy,” Quinn said of Ridley. “And I’m sure you guys have noticed too the way he practices. There’s an intensity about him that he brings that’s past maybe the age of him. So I really respect that part of his game.”

One of the reasons why the Falcons are so excited about Ridley is that he already has proved to be mature beyond his years. A big part of that maturity has to do with Ridley already having a firm grasp of the playbook.