If the fans of any wide-receiver-needy teams out there were hoping that Calvin Ridley’s theoretically imminent departure from Atlanta was going to result in a great addition for 2022, welp, that’s not happening now.
While he was away from the Falcons this past season, Ridley bet on NFL games, according to a league investigation. That means he’s getting a massive suspension:
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) March 7, 2022
As you can see, the NFL goes to great lengths to emphasize that Ridley’s activity had no bearing on games, nor did he benefit from inside information. Now that the league is in bed with a number of sports betting partners, they have to be OVERLY aggressive in policing this stuff, because a lack of confidence in the fairness of the games and wagering would be a massive problem.
As for Ridley, the 27-year-old wide receiver would’ve been entering his walk year on a base salary of over $11 million, which has now been forfeited. He sat out most of last season while battling mental health issues.
Ridley will be eligible to apply for reinstatement after next season, though it’s unclear what will happen for him at that point after missing so much time. The Falcons apparently declined any trade talks this offseason because of the looming issue:
Multiple NFL teams reached out to the Falcons in recent weeks to inquire about trading for Calvin Ridley, and each time, Atlanta declined to enter into any talks out of good faith, knowing the issues in store for their standout wide receiver, per sources.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) March 7, 2022
Ridley posted this yesterday and it makes you wonder if he knew what was coming:
I learn from my Ls
— CALVIN RIDLEY (@CalvinRidley1) March 6, 2022
UPDATE: Ridley confirms, and mentions the amount:
I bet 1500 total I don’t have a gambling problem
— CALVIN RIDLEY (@CalvinRidley1) March 7, 2022