Should Ravens Explore Trades for Two of Their Former First-Round Picks?
Wide receiver and tight end are often mentioned as positions the Ravens should look to bolster via trade before the league's Nov. 3 deadline.
CBS Sports’ Jason La Canfora said the Ravens should explore trading for two of their former first-round picks: New York Jets wide receiver Breshad Perriman and Atlanta Falcons tight end Hayden Hurst.
"Both are still young and cheap and, more to the point, speedy and athletic," La Canfora wrote. "Baltimore has no secondary option in the passing game beyond the Big 2 (tight end Mark Andrews and receiver Hollywood Brown). Jets GM Joe Douglas spent years with the Ravens and they have strong relationships. He badly needs picks and Perriman is on a one-year deal.
"The Falcons have not got Hurst going much, they fired everyone already and while giving back Hurst for a lot less than you gave up to get him is less than ideal ... well, so is going 2-13 over your first five games each of the last three seasons."
Perriman, selected 26th overall in 2015, struggled with injuries and inconsistency during his three years in Baltimore. After spending his entire rookie season on injured reserve, Perriman caught 43 passes for 576 yards and three touchdowns over his next two seasons. He was released prior to the start of the 2018 season.
Perriman played for the Cleveland Browns in 2018, then signed with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers last year and showed flashes of the player he was expected to be coming out of Central Florida.
With the Buccaneers banged up at wide receiver late in the season, Perriman became a starter and recorded three consecutive 100-yard-receiving games. Over the last three weeks of the season, he made 17 receptions for 349 yards and four touchdowns.
Perriman has not been nearly as productive this season with the New York Jets. He missed three games with an ankle injury before returning to action this past Sunday, when he made four catches for 62 yards, both season-highs. For the season, Perriman has nine catches for 91 yards and no touchdowns.
Hurst, the 25th-overall selection in 2018, was dealt to the Falcons this offseason. In exchange for Hurst and a fourth-round pick, the Ravens received second- and fifth-round picks.
Hurst is on pace for 51 catches, 605 yards and eight touchdowns, which would all be career highs. In two seasons in Baltimore, he compiled 43 catches for 512 yards and three touchdowns.
Baltimore traded Hurst in large part because he desired more playing time, which he wasn't going to get with the Ravens, who have a Pro Bowl tight end in Andrews and one of the best blocking tight ends in Nick Boyle.
Speaking of tight ends, La Canfora said the Ravens also should inquire about Irv Smith of the Minnesota Vikings. Meanwhile, Ebony Bird’s Chris Schisler made the case that the Ravens should seek a trade with the New York Giants for tight end Evan Engram.
Are Ravens Among Teams Interested in Antonio Brown?
With free-agent wide receiver Antonio Brown's suspension eligible to end after Week 8, several teams have expressed interest in signing him, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter.
The Seattle Seahawks were the only team specifically mentioned by Schefter, but speculation about the Ravens signing the four-time All-Pro was a hot topic this past spring and summer.
Lamar Jackson said on multiple occasions that he hoped the Ravens would sign Brown after he, Brown, and Brown's cousin, Marquise "Hollywood" Brown, worked out together in the offseason.
In May, Antonio Brown shared a photo of himself in a Ravens uniform on social media. The following month, NFL Network reported that the Ravens had "internal discussions" about signing him.
Brown, who hasn't played since Week 2 of last season, was suspended by the NFL for multiple violations of the league's personal conduct policy. The league also continues to investigate a lawsuit filed by Brown's former athletic trainer, alleging that she was sexually assaulted by him.
While questions about Browns' character shouldn't be ignored, signing him would make sense for the Ravens if strictly based on their need to improve in the passing game, NBC Sports Washington’s Ethan Cadeaux wrote.
"Second-year veteran Marquise 'Hollywood' Brown has been one of quarterback Lamar Jackson's go-to targets, but the two have yet to fully click on a weekly basis," Cadeaux wrote. "Outside of him, Baltimore has gotten little to no production from the rest of its wideouts. Miles Boykin was expected to take a step forward in 2020 as the team's No. 2 wideout but has just 11 receptions for 122 yards on the season.
"If Baltimore hopes to advance in the playoffs, something it hasn't done the past two seasons, it'll simply need more production from its wide receiver corps."
Ravens Would Be Good Fit for Chargers' Melvin Ingram
In addition to wide receiver and tight end, there also has been much speculation about the Ravens' desire to trade for a pass rusher. Could Los Angeles Chargers veteran defensive end Melvin Ingram be an option?
The Athletic's Daniel Popper isn't convinced the Chargers (1-4) will be sellers before the deadline, but he looked at what teams might be a good fit for Ingram, who is in the final year of his contract, if they were open to trading him.
Popper, who covers the Chargers, and Jeff Zrebiec, who covers the Ravens for The Athletic, put their heads together and came up with what might be a plausible trade scenario. They believe the Ravens could land Ingram for a third-round pick.
"The Chargers would get a compensatory pick if Ingram walked in free agency after this season, but that pick wouldn't materialize until the 2022 draft, and there is no guarantee it would be a third-rounder," Popper wrote. "If the Chargers are looking to add draft capital for 2021, this deal for Ingram makes sense. The Ravens also could be willing to give Ingram the contract extension he is seeking — the one the Chargers have not given him to this point."
Ingram, 31, is a three-time Pro Bowl selection and had a career-high 10.5 sacks in 2015 and 2017. A knee injury has limited Ingram to two games this season, but he was designated to return from injured reserve earlier this week.
Justin Tucker Attempts 67-Yard Kick in Quest for 99 Rating in 'Madden'
Not many players would be disappointed with a 98 rating in "Madden," but not many players are as good at what they do as Justin Tucker, who is the most accurate kicker in NFL history.
Tucker, who received 98s in kick power and kick accuracy from the video game franchise, said he felt disrespected and was determined to raise his kick power rating to 99, the highest-possible number. And just like the overwhelming majority of his kicks, Tucker's attempt was successful.
On Bleacher Report’s “Underrated” web series, Madden Ratings Adjuster Clint Oldenburg said he'd need to see Tucker kick a 65-yarder or deeper in order to get a 99 for kick power.
Tucker was asked to kick consecutive field goals, starting with 61 yards and increasing by a yard with every subsequent kick. He nailed his first three kicks, and then jumped ahead to 65 yards, which would be an NFL record if it occurred in a game. Yep, he made that one, too.
Tucker went right to 67 yards after that. His first attempt hit the crossbar, but he made his second one.
"I'm just pissed off it took me so long," Tucker said after converting the 67-yarder.
Tucker also increased his throw-on-the-run rating.