As far as backup NFL quarterbacks go, Chris Redman certainly looks the part. A guy who was out of football for almost three years as an insurance salesman returned to pro football with the Falcons during their disastrous 2007 campaign.
Despite the terrible team performance, Redman proved himself to be the best quarterback out of a painfully inept group that featured the likes of Joey Harrington and Byron Leftwich. He's stuck around as Matt Ryan's backup ever since and has been... well, there.
I can't say that Redman has been a good backup, because he hasn't. I also wouldn't go so far as to call him bad either. He's been a solid game manager the few times Atlanta has had need of his services, but regardless of those performances no one really feels confident that he could win games as a starter. The general reaction whenever Ryan is slow to get up really emphasizes the lack of confidence everyone has in Redman.
With Redman's impending free agency only one month away, the Falcons should probably look for a backup with more upside.
Because this year's free agent class could actually feature some really intriguing top-end players (Peyton Manning, Matt Flynn, Alex Smith), the Falcons could very well find an upgrade at backup QB from the free agent scrap-heap:
David Garrard- He sat out the entire 2011 season while recovering from back surgery, but he'll be good to go for next season. The Falcons coaching staff is literally overflowing with former Jacksonville coaches, and Atlanta wouldn't be a difficult move for the veteran QB. He'll likely want to use this season to get back on his feet, and Atlanta would be the perfect place for him to do so.
Chad Henne- Henne showed flashes of brilliance while in Miami, but never really came away with wins. His 2011 season also ended in injury, and he'll likely settle for a backup job somewhere. Mike Nolan's Miami contacts may or may help Henne's decision, and as far as backups go the Michigan QB would be a big upgrade over Redman.
Dennis Dixon- Given Ben Roethlisberger's tendency to get injured, this one's a long shot. Dixon is not a great passer by any means, but he's got legs. The Falcons could use his speed in a wildcat-esque formation or during gimmick plays (something Mike Mularkey never did).
Let's face it: we know exactly what Redman offers the club, and frankly it's not enough for me when we could get a better player for the same cost.