Calvin Ridley has been suspended by the NFL for at least the next season for gambling on gamees. The Atlanta Falcons wide receiver won’t play in 2022 and there is no guarantee for the NFL future of the player who had been expected to be the Falcons’ top target for quarterback Matt Ryan.
NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell on Monday suspended Ridley after a league investigation determined Ridley bet on NFL games in 2021 while away from the team addressing mental health concerns. The league says the suspension will carry “through at least the conclusion of the 2022 season.”
New England Patriots linebacker Matthew Judon reacted to the suspension news while referring to it as “trash,” and called for the NFL to “free” Ridley.
Ridley wrote on his Twitter account on Monday “I bet 1500 total I don’t have a gambling problem.” He added in another post “I know I was wrong But I’m getting 1 year lol.” He also said “Just gone be more healthy when I come back.”
Ridley defended himself in another tweet when he said “If you know me you know my character.”
Luckily for him, he did not take it any further than just betting. A league investigation uncovered no evidence inside information was used or that any game was compromised by Ridley’s betting, Goodell’s announcement said. Nor was there evidence suggesting Falcons coaches, players or staff were aware of Ridley’s betting activity.
Ridley may petition for reinstatement after Feb. 23, 2023.
The Falcons’ 2018 first-round draft pick had 90 catches for 1,374 yards and nine touchdowns in 2020. He only had 31 receptions for 281 yards and two touchdowns in his shortened season in 2021.