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Falcons make QB switch, elevate Taylor Heinicke over Desmond Ridder vs Vikings due to ‘variables’

Former XFL star Taylor Heinicke has been named the starting quarterback for the Atlanta Falcons‘ Week 9 matchup with the Minnesota Vikings, coach Arthur Smith announced on Wednesday.

The Falcons selected quarterback Desmond Ridder in the third round of last year’s draft. Ridder was elevated to the starting position for the final four games of the 2022 season and started for the first eight games of this season. 

He was pulled from last Sunday’s contest at halftime and Heinicke handled the quarterback duties for the remainder of the game.

“Just for this week, just with all the variables, just kind of considering everything in the last 72 hours and what we feel is best for this week against Minnesota, Taylor will play this week,” Smith said on Wednesday.

Minnesota acquired veteran quarterback Joshua Dobbs in a trade earlier this week, but rookie Jaren Hall is still expected to start against the Falcons.

Chantz Martin is a sports writer for Fox News Digital.

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