Of all the teams with a solid chance at making an impact in 2014, none of them need a WR more than Baltimore. Make no mistake about it, Ozzie Newsome has something up his sleeve for next years receiving corps. Whether it's a newly acquired Free Agent or a pick in this years 2014 NFL Draft, a move must be made. However, the past leads me to believe the front office of the Baltimore Ravens will make their move via Free Agency. They have their burner in Torrey Smith, but Joe Flacco sorely missed his 3rd down weapons in Anquan Boldin and Dennis Pitta. Historically, Ozzie and Co. look to bring in a veteran WR presence, i.e. Derrick Mason in 2005, Anquan Boldin in 2010. Mason received a 5 year, 20 million dollar contract while Boldin was given a 3-year deal worth 25 million. I can't see the Ravens shelling out that type of dough for a WR, as they do have other pressing needs such as locking up left tackle Eugene Monroe, making Haloti Ngata a Raven for life, and deciding on Terrell Suggs' future in Baltimore. That being said, let's take a look at 4 potential free agents you could see in purple next year. Just a heads up, I'm leaving Eric Decker and Hakeem Nicks off this list as they would require too much cash per year.
Here's my Top 4 Wide Receiver Free Agents for 2014
- Riley Cooper: The Eagles have two major decisions regarding their receiving corps. Both Jeremy Maclin and Riley Cooper are set to be free agents. Many believe Maclin is set to get a 1-year deal, leaving Cooper up for grabs. While Cooper did make headlines last offseason in all the wrong ways, but we'll let his play speak for itself. First, he's only 26 years old and a big body at 6'3" 220 pounds. Cooper broke out last year catching 47 passes for 835 yards and 8 TD's. That's nearly 18 yards per grab. Riley also does a great job using his big body to block. Given his offseason troubles, I see a team giving Riley Cooper a 1-2 year deal, somewhere in the 2-4 million dollar range a year. Cooper would look great in purple next year catching bubble screens opposite Torrey Smith.
- Anquan Boldin: What is there left to say about this guy? He's a machine, and didn't stop harassing smaller corners in San Francisco. Boldin admitted himself he saw his career ending last year, and was shocked when not re-signed. Let's not make the same mistake twice Ozzie...
- James Jones: It may be long forgotten, but this is the guy who led the NFL with 14 Touchdown receptions in 2012. We saw Jones lose his ability to separate from corners with a PCL sprain in October. Also, in the playoff game against the 49ers, he battled through two broken ribs. With the emergence of Jarrett Boykin, look for Jones to test free agency. James Jones knows his days might be limited in the NFL, so look for him to draw less money. If the Ravens could sign him to a one year deal in the 2-3 million dollar range, he could be a big asset in 2014.
- Kenny Britt: Britt, a former first rounder chosen by the Titans, has overstayed his welcome in Tennessee. Britt has had numerous run-ins with the police, and may just need a change of scenery to turn his career around. He's another big body, at 6'3" 225 pounds. Britt also turned in an impressive 4.7 second 40 yard dash at the combine. While this would also be a 1 year tryout for Kenny if the Ravens do decide to bring him in, he would only require somewhere in the 800k range. With his size and speed, I would love to see him in Ravens purple next year.