Falcons tab Mariota as starter to begin training camp

Posted: 28/07/2022 in NFL
Tags: , , , , , ,

The Atlanta Falcons have named Marcus Mariota their starting quarterback over rookie Desmond Ridder to start training camp.

“Obviously, we’ve got a plan for each of them. Marcus is the starter,” quarterbacks coach Charles London said Wednesday, according to The Athletic’s Josh Kendall.

Mariota was spotted taking snaps with the first-team unit during the Falcons’ opening practice.

Atlanta is looking for a successor to Matt Ryan after the club dealt the former MVP signal-caller to the Indianapolis Colts for a 2022 third-round pick.

Mariota inked a two-year, $18.75-million contract with Atlanta as a free agent this offseason. He spent the past two seasons as a backup with the Las Vegas Raiders. The Oregon product previously spent five years with the Tennessee Titans after they selected him second overall in the 2015 NFL Draft. Mariota has started 61 of 74 career games.

Meanwhile, Atlanta drafted Ridder in the third round of the 2022 draft. Ridder, who’ll turn 23 next month, helped Cincinnati become the first Group of 5 school to earn a College Football Playoff berth last season. He racked up 3,334 passing yards and 30 touchdowns with a 64.9% completion rate.

Feleipe Franks is also on the team’s depth chart but is expected to practice as a tight end throughout most of training camp, per Kendall.

London notes that he doesn’t envision any complacency from either Mariota or Ridder as training camp moves toward preseason action.

“I expect those guys to compete,” he said. “Right now, Marcus is the starter, and he’s doing a great job.”

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