KC Chiefs Quarterback Prospects – Desmond Ridder (Cincinnati)
Sometimes teams look for a backup quarterback that, instead of capable in some capacity of running the offense the starter ran, go in a direction for something different, or a combination of traits to work with. Desmond Ridder has a strong arm and is a really good athlete, dangerous both through the air and on the ground. Ridder certainly is an intriguing name to follow should the Chiefs decide to look into drafting a quarterback.
Ridder is a tall quarterback with a strong arm that shows good accuracy, which is better when he’s throwing in rhythm. Athletic, he is a natural runner with the football and would provide the Chiefs with a ground threat at quarterback. For a Cincinnati team that has won a lot of games, Ridder is asked to move and throw to both sides of the field and make quick decisions.
My biggest concern is that Ridder, at times, looks like Marcus Mariota when he was at Oregon. In a read-option offense, Ridder is rarely asked to scan a defense looking for a receiver, choosing either a handoff or a quick pass. Often times, Ridder takes off running (something he’s good at) early and can put his head down instead of trying to find receivers down the field.
Ridder is an intriguing prospect that needs to end up in the right fit with the right coach. While he is capable of throwing from the pocket, that’s not currently who he is, but he could be that. With some technique refinement and coaching, Ridder is the type of prospect that could be a solid backup and then maybe something more down the road.
KC Chiefs Quarterback Prospects – Zach Smith (Tulsa)
The easiest way to describe Tulsa and former Baylor quarterback Zach Smith is this — Coming into the NFL, Smith is what many claimed Mahomes to be or would become. Smith can make all the throws whether they’re deep boundary throws, velocity into tight spaces, or throws made on the run. He also throws a lot of interceptions, often trying to make plays that are not there.
Smith’s completion percentage is not what you’d like to see, for his career at 56.4%, throwing for 7877 yards and 52 touchdowns in 39 career games. However, he has thrown 32 interceptions in that time. Smith needs to learn to be better with touch and better knowing when to throw a ball away.
There are traits to work with, especially a player likely to go late in the draft. There are a lot of things to clean up as well. Smith is someone that would be available on Day 3 of the draft and could be an intriguing option for Brett Veach and Andy Reid to work with.