By: Matt Rothman
For decades, Monarch High School has always had some incredible wide receivers.
While Jabari Brady and Samari Reed are receiving offers from some of the top schools in the country, the NFL now features one of the top wide receivers in Calvin Ridley.
A 2015 graduate from Monarch, Ridley had 41 passes for 1,131 yards and 12 touchdowns as a junior before only being allowed to play in three games as a senior, where he caught 18 passes for 420 yards and four scores.
As one of the top recruits in the country, Ridley went on to play college football at Alabama and played three years under Nick Saban. Ridley caught 224 passes for 2,781 yards and scored 20 touchdowns while winning a pair of National Championships.
Monarch High School Head Coach Calvin Davis called Ridley one of the best receivers to come through Broward County.
“He was very humble and just loved the game of football in high school,” head coach Calvin Davis said. “He sacrificed so much to get where he is, and I’m so happy for him and his family that he is back and doing what he loves.”
Ridley was selected in the first round of the 2018 NFL draft by the Atlanta Falcons. He played for the Falcons for four years and had a total of 3,342 yards before he was traded to the Jacksonville Jaguars. However, Ridley was suspended for the entire 2022 season due to his involvement in betting on NFL games.
After serving his suspension, he returned to the field and has been one of the top-performing receivers in the NFL this year. As of Week 16, Ridley has accumulated 871 yards and scored seven touchdowns.
The Jaguars are currently 8-7 this season and are tied the top spot in the AFC South. If Jacksonville qualifies for the postseason, it will be the first chance for Ridley to compete in the NFL playoffs.
- Matt Rothman is a 2018 graduate from Florida Gulf Coast University receiving his bachelor’s degree in journalism and then graduated from the University of Florida as a graduate student. He also works for the Mohave Valley Daily News in Bullhead City, Arizona covering high school sports.
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