No. 1 Jacksonville Jaguars player set to finish the 2023 season strong: Calvin Ridley, WR
The Jags had a relatively quiet offseason but that was mostly because they weren't in need of addressing as many roster needs as last year. Moreover, they made a splash move when they acquired wide receiver Calvin Ridley from the Atlanta Falcons at the 2022 trade deadline.
Ridley was suspended at the time the trade took place, having bet on NFL games in December 2021. The Jacksonville native was reinstated in March and wasted no time he had no rust despite the fact that he hadn't stepped on the football field in more than a year. By all accounts, Ridley was still the same game-changer he was in Atlanta.
The regular season came and he got off to a good start, hauling in eight catches for 101 receiving yards and one touchdown. But then, he cooled off and has had just one 100-yard game the past seven games. This isn't entirely his fault though. He had a few drops early in the season but has since fixed the issue. Also, he's been consistently bracketed by opposing teams, which has limited the number of opportunities he's had to make plays.
Ridley acknowledges that the start of his stint with the Black and Teal isn't what he was hoping for, noting that it could be better. On the other hand, there's plenty of time left in the season for him to show out. In fact, there are reasons to think he'll finish strong.
For starters, he's had more time to get acquainted with the system, and without Zay Jones in the fold, he'll be asked to step into a bigger role. Also, his rapport with Trevor Lawrence should have grown stronger during the BYE week.
Throughout the season, Ridley has shown flashes of the WR1 he was early in his career. His talent should be in full display in the second half.