The news comes one day after Ridley’s agents, SportsTrust Advisors, announced over Twitter that he agreed to terms on a deal.
The contract is for four years with a team option on a fifth for Ridley, who was selected by the Falcons with the 26th overall pick of the 2018 NFL Draft. According to Spotrac, Ridley is estimated to receive a total of $10.9 million over four years and count for $1.9 million against the salary cap in 2018.
Ridley had 63 receptions for 967 yards and five touchdowns last season with Alabama. The 6-foot-1, 190-pounder finished his career with the Crimson Tide with 224 catches for 2,781 yards and 19 scores.
“Comfort-wise, he probably came in a little bit ahead of the curve,” Falcons coach Dan Quinn said recently, per the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “Not only did Alabama use some of the same pro-style concepts that we feature, some of the terminology had even been the same.”
Jones is coming off another huge season with 88 receptions for 1,444 yards, although he reached the end zone only three times.
Sanu had a career-best 67 catches for 703 yards and a team-leading five touchdown receptions in 2017.
“(Ridley) was so mindful to get it exactly at the right depths and then as the practices went on, you saw more of the speed come on because he had a real assurance of the right spot, the right space and where to break guys off,” Quinn said, per the newspaper. “So, I’m encouraged. The speed and the athleticism, all of the things you saw on tape, that all came to life.”
Ridley became the sixth and final member of the team’s 2018 draft class to put pen to paper on a deal. Cornerback Isaiah Oliver, defensive tackle Deadrin Senat, running back Ito Smith, wide receiver Russell Gage and linebacker Foyesade Oluokun were also selected by the Falcons in April.
Quinn praised the rookie draft class recently.
“I like the rookie class,” he said. “I think in seven or eight months from now we’ll look back and say, ‘Alright coach, who were the ones who had the impact?’ Some of the men that are standing here are going to have a significant impact on our team. Which ones those are going to be? That’s yet to be determined, but it’s a good group — one that there’s a number of them (who) are really worth developing.”