One of college football’s best wide receivers is ready to make the leap to the pros:
— CALVIN RIDLEY (@CalvinRidley1) January 10, 2018
Alabama’s Calvin Ridley declared for the NFL Draft on Wednesday, just days after he and the Crimson Tide celebrated a come-from-behind win against Georgia to bring home a national championship. Ridley caught four passes for 32 yards, including a fourth-quarter touchdown that ultimately sent the game into overtime. Monday’s win put a stamp on Ridley’s junior season as he finished with 63 catches for 967 yards and five touchdowns.
The Chicago Bears could be a match for Ridley on draft day. He was described as unguardable earlier in the season and we already know he has been on their radar for quite some time. Considering Ridley’s talent and the Bears’ need to add players with Ridley’s skills to aid in Mitch Trubisky’s development and push the offense in the right direction, it wouldn’t be surprising if he ended up being The Guy chosen by GM Ryan Pace come April.
Ridley was an immediate contributor as a true freshman at Alabama and racked up big numbers from the get-go. He caught 89 passes, gained 1,045 yards, and scored seven touchdowns. He also earned Freshman All-America status from USA Today in 2015, was given second-team All-SEC honors as a sophomore in 2016, and eventually first-team All-SEC in 2017. In total, Ridley finishes his impressive three-year career with 224 catches, 2,781 receiving yards, 19 touchdowns, and two College Football Playoff National Championships.
Now that he has declared for the draft, Ridley is one of the top two wide receiver prospects on the board. So prepare yourself for the forthcoming back-and-forth debate weighing whether Courtland Sutton’s combination of size, speed, and upside or Ridley’s quickness, route-running ability, and hands should make him the top receiver available.
Underclassmen have until January 15 to declare for the NFL Draft, but can withdraw until January 19 and return to school if they so choose.