Riley Ridley: My Brother Being Close Really Helped Me

Riley was in Athens; Calvin was in Atlanta. The brothers were able to connect and talk shop several times last season

The DA Show
February 21, 2019 - 11:23 am
Riley Ridley Georgia Alabama SEC Championship Atlanta

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At 6-2, 200 pounds, Georgia’s Riley Ridley is one of the top wide receiver prospects in this year’s NFL Draft. He was a solid contributor as a freshman and sophomore before emerging as the Bulldogs’ go-to receiver in 2018, finishing with 43 catches for 559 yards and nine touchdowns.

He will likely be one of the first wideouts off the board in April.

“I would say my route-running,” Ridley said on The DA Show, when asked about his greatest strength as a receiver. “I like to gain separation in my routes, at the top of my routes. I like to have separation, which helps me with catching the ball. Without a defender on me, it’s easier to catch the ball.”

If Riley needs advice on the NFL Draft journey, his older brother, Calvin, would be a good resource. The Atlanta Falcons drafted the former Alabama star last year. In fact, the brothers were able to connect several times last season, as Athens is roughly 70 miles from Atlanta.

“When he got drafted by the Atlanta Falcons, it set in on me that my brother was going to be close,” Riley said. “It was exciting. I was able to go down after the work we had to do at Georgia and just sit down and talk to him, eat, just crack jokes and talk about football – just be brothers. It was a real help for me throughout my season, and just the mentoring that he gave me, I was able to take that from him and transition it to my team.”

Calvin finished his rookie season with 64 catches for 821 yards and 10 touchdowns. He showcased big-play ability early and often – and Riley hopes to do the same.

“Since his high school days, he always (helped me),” Riley said. “He lets me know that the better your route is, the better receiver you can be. Not a lot of receivers can run really good routes and get open. But that really separates receivers with running really good routes and being able to get open for the quarterback to gain his trust.”