Jarvis Landry is widely considered the top receiver in a somewhat weak free agent market. He would be the Ravens best receiver by a large margin right away. He was frequently compared to Anquan Boldin coming out of the draft and he’s displayed that type of physical play since being drafted by the Miami Dolphins. The Ravens haven’t really had a physical chain moving receiver since Steve Smith Sr’s best year with the team in 2014. Jarvis Landry can be that and then some still in his prime. However he will be significantly more expensive than Smith Sr. ever was.
It is regularly mentioned that Landry is looking for around 14 million per year. That’s a lot of money for a team with not much money to work with. It can be done but certainly limits what other moves the Ravens can make not only this year but future years. Even more so with what the team will have to do with restructures which hinders future years. The other side of that though is some of these expensive contracts will run out in the next few years opening up more money again.
If we were to land him I propose a 6-year deal instead of a normal 4 or 5-year deal. It could keep the cap numbers down just a little bit and if the Ravens decide to part ways down the line there shouldn’t be too much dead money involved. I think with a 6-year deal a 12 million dollar average is reasonable and the deal could look something like this. $72 million 6 year deal.
$18 million bonus
year 1 base salary- $2 million-cap hit $5 million
year 2 base salary- $5 million-cap hit $8 million
year 3 base salary- $8 million-cap hit $11 million
year 4 base salary- $11 million-cap hit $14 million /dead money if cut $9 mil.
year 5 base salary- $13 million-cap hit $16 million /dead money if cut $6 mil.
year 6 base salary- $15 million-cap hit $18 million /dead money if cut $3 mil.
Although the deal is 6 years if need be the Ravens could cut ties after 3 years without crippling salary cap damage. If there are no signs of Landry slowing down an extension after year 4 or 5 would also make sense to lower his cap number again. The salary cap limit rises a fair amount each year, $14 million in year 4 probably won’t seem like that much money as long as he is as productive as we expect him to be.
Now as far as the trading part goes. If I’m Ozzie in my final year I’m calling Miami’s bluff and waiting for them to release Landry. I’m certainly not giving up anything more than a 6th round pick to land a receiver fresh off of his rookie contract. His cheap years are gone and will immediately have to pay him. Last year the Dolphins could’ve got much more value in a trade. Now they currently don’t have the money to pay him and I don’t think they want to rent him for one more year on a $14 million franchise tag. Plus allowing Landry to discuss terms with another team gives the Ravens the upper hand because he can decide that’s where he’s going and not agree to a deal with another team. Teams won’t make a trade for a receiver they only get to rent for a year on an expensive franchise tag. I’m not sure even the Browns would do that.
This year’s draft class offers a lot of depth in the mid rounds and taking a couple from there would be the cheapest option. I don’t expect Ozzie to get desperate and overpay. If we landed a couple from the draft in the early rounds combined with Landry that would ease any concerns at the position. Rookies don’t always start off hot so some veteran presence is needed whether it be Landry or going back to Wallace. I think we have seen the last of Maclin in a Ravens uniform. I think the most likely scenario is a cap casualty and there is expected to be a handful of quality options. Hang tight it’s going to be an interesting ride this week heading into free agency