Baltimore Ravens: The pros and cons of targeting Dez Bryant

LANDOVER, MD - OCTOBER 29: Wide receiver Dez Bryant
LANDOVER, MD - OCTOBER 29: Wide receiver Dez Bryant /
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PHILADELPHIA, PA – DECEMBER 31: Wide receiver Dez Bryant
PHILADELPHIA, PA – DECEMBER 31: Wide receiver Dez Bryant /

Cons

With plenty of pros come cons and there’s a reason why the Cowboys released Bryant.

Since signing his five-year, $70 million contract extension in 2015, Bryant has been a shell of his former self. After totaling 3,935 receiving yards and 41 touchdowns leading up to the extension, Bryant has combined for just 2,035 receiving yards and 17 touchdowns. That’s a significant drop off in production. The Ravens aren’t flexible to risk their money and the drop off provides a cause for concern.

A drop off in production is a perfect segway to drops, which were a problem for Bryant last season. He finished among the league leaders with six drops and has posted an average catch percentage of just under 50% over the last three seasons. After watching Ravens’ receivers struggle catch balls last season, especially in the latter weeks, Bryant isn’t an improvement in that regards.

Could Bryant co-exist in the Ravens’ locker room? Bryant has had multiple sideline and locker room meltdowns, something that we aren’t accustomed to seeing in Baltimore. The Ravens don’t have the outspoken leaders of Ray Lewis anymore and it’s certainly something to take into consideration, even at the slightest.

For Ozzie Newsome, adding another veteran receiver fits his formula but it’s not a formula that’s had a fantastic track record. Sooner or later, the Ravens have to commit to adding an influx of young talent. Brown, Crabtree, and Bryant don’t fit that mold.

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For me, the pros outweigh the cons in this situation. Bryant is only 29-years old and while he isn’t a long-term solution, the Ravens can’t solely bet on potential in a season where it’s the postseason or bust. As long as the organization isn’t committed to completely blowing the project up and starting over, there has to be a win-now mentality.