Could Calvin Ridley be the next Reggie Wayne? One NFL expert thinks so
The University of Alabama has seen its share of NFL talent, with 27 first round draft picks coming in the Nick Saban era alone, but one NFL analyst thinks that Calvin Ridley’s potential could put him on par with one of the best receivers the NFL has ever seen.
NFL.com analyst Bucky Brooks, who specializes in scouting college players, says that Ridley reminds him of Reggie Wayne in his column on Thursday:
If I had to compare Ridley to a high-level NFL receiver, I would compare him to former NFL great Reggie Wayne based on his size and playing style. Ridley is so smooth and effortless in his actions that he reminds me of the six-time Pro Bowl receiver during his time with the Indianapolis Colts. While I’m reluctant to put that kind of expectation on Ridley’s game or potential career, I firmly believe he is a natural plug-and-play receiver capable of making his mark immediately as a pro.
Though the young receiver has a long way to go before reaching Reggie Wayne’s ceiling, he has gotten it done during his time in Tuscaloosa. Ridley has amassed 1,821 receiving yards and 14 touchdowns in only two seasons, and with an improved passing game with Jalen Hurts, Ridley could have another monster season in 2017.
Just how good was Wayne in the NFL? He was six-time Pro Bowler during his long career, and he still ranks ninth all-time in receiving yards and 23rd all-time in career touchdown receptions.
If Ridley can translate his success to the next level, he could join fellow Alabama players Julio Jones and Amari Cooper to form potentially the best 1-2-3 punch of any school in the NFL. Assuming Ridley stays healthy this season, we’d be really surprised if he elected to return for his senior season in 2018.