NFL

3 Best Landing Spots for Calvin Ridley

Gabriel Santiago
Gabriel Santiago@gps_onthemic
3 Best Landing Spots for Calvin Ridley

Participating in his first full season since 2021, Calvin Ridley did well to cross over the 1,000-yard receiving mark for the Jacksonville Jaguars last year.

However, with Ridley set to hit free agency on March 13th, he will likely be one-and-done in northeastern Florida. That will make the 29-year-old receiver a hot commodity on the market. Should he relocate, it will be the third team of his professional career.

Ridley was initially selected 26th overall in the 2018 NFL Draft by the Atlanta Falcons. After solid play in multiple seasons for ATL (including a lengthy suspension for betting on football games), the Alabama Crimson Tide alum was traded to Jacksonville for a minimal haul.

Fast-forward to now, and Ridley is approaching free agency for the first time. Before the league year officially restarts, let's dive into the three possible landing spots for the dynamic wideout.

All NFL odds via FanDuel Sportsbook.

Calvin Ridley Potential Landing Spots

Detroit Lions

Out in Motor City, the Detroit Lions might just be a piece or two away from going the distance. At FanDuel Sportsbook, Detroit is already labeled with +1300 odds in the Super Bowl LIX betting market.

If the Lions were to add a receiver of Ridley's talents, that would certainly increase their offensive prowess. Veteran quarterback Jared Goff operates comfortably behind a beefy line, doing well to distribute the football to playmakers Amon-Ra St. Brown and Sam LaPorta. Additionally, tailback Jahmyr Gibbs is a fine option out of the backfield. Ridley would be a fabulous insertion into this skill group.

The on-field fit is apparent with Ridley in Motown. To make this pairing all the more possible, the Lions enter 2024 with the sixth-most available cap space, according to Spotrac. That number translates to about $54.3 million of financial freedom for Detroit -- imagine the possibilities.

The Lions scored 27.1 PPG a year ago, which was the fifth-highest clip of 2023. Should Ridley come to the state of Michigan, that overall figure could propel. Remember, this is a team that narrowly fell short in the recent NFC Championship.

Chicago Bears

Ahead of the 2024 NFL Draft, the Chicago Bears appear to be headed for a new era. They hold both the No. 1 and 9 picks in April's draft. It is likely they will choose USC Trojans quarterback Caleb Williams with the first overall selection. Incidentally, that means current Chicago signal-caller Justin Fields will be on the move.

If the Bears are looking for another veteran pass-catcher to play opposite of D.J. Moore, Ridley could be a quality option. Chicago general manager Ryan Poles will be looking to make a splash, and receiver is one of the most looming needs in the Midway. Does that mean Ridley is on their radar?

With the ninth pick being just a tad too low to take one of the elite wideouts in the upcoming draft, the Bears might be better served by signing a free agent at receiver. Moving forward, Chicago is maneuvering with $57.5 million worth of cap space, which is actually more than the aforementioned Detroit.

It remains unclear what exactly "da Bears" will look like when September rolls around, but it seems they will be aggressive. Will we see a contender in the Windy City sooner than later?

New England Patriots

Perhaps more than any other NFL franchise right now, the New England Patriots are in need of an offensive overhaul. In 2023, New England shelled out just 13.9 PPG. That scoring clip resulted in the second-lowest of the recent season.

For the first time in a quarter century, the Pats are preparing for a season with a head coach not named Bill Belichick. Of course, 2008 NFL DROY and Super Bowl XLIX champion Jerod Mayo will now take over HC duties for the team he once shined for.

As a former star linebacker, Mayo will absolutely continue New England's defensive emphasis. However, the offense -- more specifically, the passing game -- needs direct addressing. After a solid rookie campaign in 2021, quarterback Mac Jones has regressed, throwing for only 2,120 yards with a dozen interceptions last year. Holding the third overall selection in the 2024 draft, I imagine New England goes for a signal-caller.

The Patriots lack a true No. 1 receiver right now, and even though Ridley wasn't quite at that level in 2023, he can still boost a group that needs a shot in the arm. Veteran receivers DeVante Parker, JuJu Smith-Schuster and Kendrick Bourne each failed to top 500 yards a season ago.

Per Spotrac, New England currently boasts the third-highest cap space for 2024 ($78.4 million). Will we see the Pats spend on talent in the coming weeks?


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The above author is a FanDuel employee and is not eligible to compete in public daily fantasy contests or place sports betting wagers on FanDuel. The advice provided by the author does not necessarily represent the views of FanDuel. Taking the author's advice will not guarantee a successful outcome. You should use your own judgment when participating in daily fantasy contests or placing sports wagers.