BREAKING: NFL Suspends Falcons WR Calvin Ridley Through At Least 2022 For Gambling

NFL Media’s Mike Garafolo reports a source informed of the league’s investigation says one of the bets WR Calvin Ridley placed did involve the Falcons. 

The NFL said in its release that: “A league investigation uncovered no evidence indicating any inside information was used or that any game was compromised in any way.  Nor was there evidence suggesting any awareness by coaches, staff, teammates, or other players of his betting activity.”

Kimberly Martin reports Ridley was betting on multiple sports, not just the NFL. Lindsay Jones says Ridley placed three parlay bets between November 23-28 and bet on the Falcons to win. Atlanta played and beat the Jaguars that week. 

Ridley also chimed in. 

The NFL announced it has suspended Falcons WR Calvin Ridley through at least the 2022 season for betting on NFL games. 

Ridley made wagers while he was away from the team to work on his mental health last season, per the league. The wagers were during a five-day period in November and the NFL says as far as they can tell, no inside information was used. 

In a letter to Ridley notifying him of his suspension, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell wrote:

“There is nothing more fundamental to the NFL’s success – and to the reputation of everyone associated with our league – than upholding the integrity of the game. This is the responsibility of every player, coach, owner, game official, and anyone else employed in the league. Your actions put the integrity of the game at risk, threatened to damage public confidence in professional football, and potentially undermined the reputations of your fellow players throughout the NFL.

“For decades, gambling on NFL games has been considered among the most significant violations of league policy warranting the most substantial sanction. In your case, I acknowledge and commend you for your promptly reporting for an interview, and for admitting your actions.” 

The Falcons also released a statement:

“We were first made aware of the league’s investigation on Feb. 9. We have cooperated fully with the investigation since receiving notice and support the league’s findings and actions. We are moving forward in the 2022 season with the decision that was made. With the decision that was made by the NFL, any further questions on the investigation should be directed to the league office.”

Ridley can appeal for reinstatement no later than February 13, 2023. He can also appeal his suspension, which seems likely. 

The former first-round pick has come up in trade speculation but a suspension would obviously curtail his market this offseason.

Ridley, 27, is a former first-round pick of the Falcons back in 2018 out of Alabama. He played out the fourth year of his four-year, $10,900,732 contract that included a $6,007,804 signing bonus.

The Falcons exercised Ridley’s fifth-year option last offseason which will cost Atlanta $11.116 million fully guaranteed in 2022. 

In 2021, Ridley appeared in five games for the Falcons and caught 31 passes for 281 yards receiving and two touchdowns. 

We’ll have more on the Falcons and Ridley as the news is available. 

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