Calvin Ridley on being traded to the Jacksonville Jaguars: This could be a great home
The Jacksonville Jaguars traded for wide receiver Calvin Ridley last year and he talked to the media for the first time since he arrived in Duval. The former Atlanta Falcon touched on several topics, including his relationship with Trevor Lawrence and his reaction to changing teams.
"I can be there, that could be a good home for me", RIdley said". A second-round selection in the 2018 draft, the Alabama product deal retired in the middle of the 2021 season, citing his mental health as the main issue. More recently, he shared in a letter he penned for The Player's Tribute that he was dealing with a lot.
During his suspension, Ridley bet on NFL games, which led the league to impose an indefinite suspension, and spent 2022 away from football. But even though he was serving a suspension, the Jaguars acquired him from the Atlanta Falcons for a package of draft picks.
Ridley applied for reinstatement earlier this year and he's request was approved. He met with the Jaguars' brass earlier this year and later joined Trevor Lawrence in throwing sessions. However, this is the first week he's officially practiced with Jacksonville as part of the team's voluntary offseason workouts, which started April 17.
Cavin Ridley will make the Jacksonville Jaguars offense much better
Calvin Ridley dealt with injuries and off-field stuff in 2021. This had a negative impact in his production. However, he was a playmaker for the Falcons in his first three NFL seasons, hauling in 217 receptions for 3,061 yards for 26 touchdowns. If he can play at that level in Jacksonville, the Jaguars' offense will be one of the best in the league.
You could argue that not playing for more than a year could affect Ridley's performance in 2023 but he says that shouldn't be a cause for concern and in fact, there's a reason to believe he could be much better. "That's not going to be an issue", Ridley said. "If I'm being real, I'm being honest, I've been good at football all my life.
"I'm trying to be humble. Like I said, I've been pretty good at football all my life, and I've not only been good, I also work to be good. They say two years off, but how about the healing process that I got to be with that time off? What if I got faster? What if I got stronger? Obviously, I got wiser. Why can't I be better?", Ridley said.
Keep in mind that the regular season is still several months away, so even if Ridley weren't in football shape, which doesn't seem to be the case, he has more than enough time to get ready. Moreover, he should be able to get fully acclimated to his new home and the Jaguars' offense.
The Jacksonville Jaguars will have to wait until September to see what kind of impact he'll have with them. But based on his interaction with the local media, it's fair to say that they'll most likely get the same player he was early in his stint in Atlanta.