Calvin Ridley, you in?

Would you want the Patriot to sign Calvin Ridley at 3/$60 with $27.4MM guaranteed?


  • Total voters
    172

Pxer

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Much like Tyron Smith, we need to surround our rookie QB with as much talent as possible. Solidifying the OL and giving him a bona fide #1 WR goes a long way in helping that QB develop. I'd probably go up to 3/70 with some more guarantees.
 

Jungleland

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The cap is enormous, they have an enormous amount of space, Ridley is more talented than any WR they have, and there really isn’t anyone better available in FA. No brainer if it can happen.
 

DennyDoyle'sBoil

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I think there will be an advantage to teams that get deals done early. I think the market is going to have an upwards adjustment as free agency goes on and if I were a GM I would be trying like crazy to get deals done right now by throwing good offers out there. Now is not the time to start low and negotiate higher. Now is the time to put your best foot forward and make it hard for agents to tell their guys to wait it out. Obviously, I could be wrong. And even if I am right, agents have much more info than I ever would to make these decisions.

But this really feels like a market to strike while the iron is hot.
 
Oct 12, 2023
767
Ridley would obviously be better than what they have in house but a 30 year old who disappeared a lot last year (9 games under 50 yards and dropped a number of key would-be touchdowns or big plays) isn’t my preferred use of money. I’d rather get a younger or higher end defensive player as the big ticket signing instead of paying a good-not-great receiver

That said, they have the cap space to overpay him, but I think he’s overrated by a lot of people and profiles as the type of guy who will look terrible in retrospect.
 

Justthetippett

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Aug 9, 2015
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Ridley would obviously be better than what they have in house but a 30 year old who disappeared a lot last year (9 games under 50 yards and dropped a number of key would-be touchdowns or big plays) isn’t my preferred use of money. I’d rather get a younger or higher end defensive player as the big ticket signing instead of paying a good-not-great receiver

That said, they have the cap space to overpay him, but I think he’s overrated by a lot of people and profiles as the type of guy who will look terrible in retrospect.
Probably a contract that will look bad in year 2 and even worse in year 3, I think you're right. If we bring back Bourne, and add a pick or two (one high, one in the late rounds)...that could be the better course but it's a pretty unspectacular receiver room and our tight end situation is not great either. It's a hard choice. I'd express interest, let the market develop and see if I wanted to swoop in later in the process. I would not be out there early setting his market.
 

Mooch

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I'm less worried about Ridley's age since he's really only played the equivalent of three full seasons as an NFL starter in his career.

The main issue I have is the declining catch % rate. Steadily dropping every year in his career. His on-again, off-again focus is a concern. I'm not sure I'd want to commit huge dollars to him but he'd be an improvement over what we have so I'm torn.
 

BaseballJones

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Ridley is exactly the kind of guy who you pay money for, and then when he doesn't give you big numbers, the critics howl that it was obviously a ridiculous overpay given his real-world production.

Parker, in his last full (16 game) season, was 26 years old with Miami and he put up 72 catches, 1,202 yds (16.7 avg), and 9 touchdowns (56.3% catch rate).
Ridley, last year at age 29, played a full (17 game) season, and put up 76 catches, 1,016 yds (13.4 avg), and 8 touchdowns (55.9% catch rate).

Is Ridley better than Parker? Probably. I'd say yes. But it's not like Calvin Ridley has been this incredible player and he's now up there in age.

Agholor, the year before he came to NE, played 16 games at 27 years of age and put up 48 catches for 896 yds (18.7 avg), and 8 touchdowns (58.5% catch rate).

New England has rightly been criticized for signing Parker and Agholor. If they sign Ridley to a big deal and he doesn't put up big numbers, the criticism will be just as loud, and for all the same reasons.
 

j44thor

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I'd rather sign Gabe Davis at his projected 13M/Y over 4yrs. Davis is just about to turn 25, has had a couple very productive years and should be entering his prime. He isn't Calvin Ridley but won't cost what Ridley does and Davis is better in the run game which should be leaned out breaking in a rookie QB. I think with Davis you have an untapped upside that isn't there with Ridley.
 

astrozombie

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Sep 12, 2022
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Ridley is exactly the kind of guy who you pay money for, and then when he doesn't give you big numbers, the critics howl that it was obviously a ridiculous overpay given his real-world production.

Parker, in his last full (16 game) season, was 26 years old with Miami and he put up 72 catches, 1,202 yds (16.7 avg), and 9 touchdowns (56.3% catch rate).
Ridley, last year at age 29, played a full (17 game) season, and put up 76 catches, 1,016 yds (13.4 avg), and 8 touchdowns (55.9% catch rate).

Is Ridley better than Parker? Probably. I'd say yes. But it's not like Calvin Ridley has been this incredible player and he's now up there in age.

Agholor, the year before he came to NE, played 16 games at 27 years of age and put up 48 catches for 896 yds (18.7 avg), and 8 touchdowns (58.5% catch rate).

New England has rightly been criticized for signing Parker and Agholor. If they sign Ridley to a big deal and he doesn't put up big numbers, the criticism will be just as loud, and for all the same reasons.
As with everything Pats-offense-in-the-last-few-years discussion, everything was a mess. I'm of the mind that Parker is fine, just not as a WR1. Which he was because the Pats were awful and Mac was flinging balls towards him while running for his life. Add to that whatever offensive philosophy the Pats had that seemed to regard WR as a curiosity more than a legit position and it was just terrible and Parker was miscast.
I'm fine with signing Ridley (without breaking the bank) because this offense needs talent. I don't think it's going to be an overnight fix on offense (though it could be!) and much like the Sox, I would prefer they accumulate talent for a reasonable cost where they can rather than hoping that they suddenly hit on a bunch of draft picks and FA in a single year.
 

Cellar-Door

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I've been trying to talk myself into him and I just can't. 29 looked less explosive after the time off. But mostly.. What does he do well?
He was one of the worst WRs in separation, terrible YAC, terrible catch rate...he got a lot of volume but Kirk was a lot better for the same team overall.

The class is so weak, but I think I sign Bourne, maybe Boyd, then I cruise the salary related trade market (Sutton, Jeudy, Shaheed?)
 

jodyreeddudley78

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I think Ridley would make a decent signing, as long as QB is addressed. Matt Harmon charted his 2023:

View: https://twitter.com/MattHarmon_BYB/status/1765095431283908890?t=EHPfxNVgzymtW6UnSXqdbg&s=19


Basically, he runs the whole route tree successfully. Ridley actually had a low % of catchable passes thrown to him in '23: 136 targets, with 82 being "catchable" (caveat, you have place some stock in people tracking these stats on a fantasy football site https://www.fantasypros.com/nfl/advanced-stats-wr.php?team=JAC ). That may explain his poor catch rate, and it is worth pointing out that Jax was one of the worst teams at throwing catchable passes to their WR.

The thing is, are the Patriots going to be competent enough on offense over the next couple of years to warrant the contract it would probably take? It just seems like they need so much.
 

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Cellar-Door

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I think Ridley would make a decent signing, as long as QB is addressed. Matt Harmon charted his 2023:

View: https://twitter.com/MattHarmon_BYB/status/1765095431283908890?t=EHPfxNVgzymtW6UnSXqdbg&s=19


Basically, he runs the whole route tree successfully. Ridley actually had a low % of catchable passes thrown to him in '23: 136 targets, with 82 being "catchable" (caveat, you have place some stock in people tracking these stats on a fantasy football site https://www.fantasypros.com/nfl/advanced-stats-wr.php?team=JAC ). That may explain his poor catch rate, and it is worth pointing out that Jax was one of the worst teams at throwing catchable passes to their WR.

The thing is, are the Patriots going to be competent enough on offense over the next couple of years to warrant the contract it would probably take? It just seems like they need so much.
I put little stock in Harmon. He keeps saying Ridley is a great separator, but we have tracking data that shows... He sucks at it. I also really don't get any tracking of WR "success" that appears to not consider things like... Did he catch the ball?

Edit - probably too harsh on him Riley grades as above average which is probably what he is
 
Last edited:

Eck'sSneakyCheese

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No thank you. The year away did not benefit him. This would be an underwhelming move to try to shoe horn him in to being a number one. He isn’t. He honestly never was. He’s a 1B and while that’s more talent than we currently have I’m not sold he has the drive or the commitment to improve. Hard pass.
 
Oct 12, 2023
767
As with everything Pats-offense-in-the-last-few-years discussion, everything was a mess. I'm of the mind that Parker is fine, just not as a WR1. Which he was because the Pats were awful and Mac was flinging balls towards him while running for his life. Add to that whatever offensive philosophy the Pats had that seemed to regard WR as a curiosity more than a legit position and it was just terrible and Parker was miscast.
I'm fine with signing Ridley (without breaking the bank) because this offense needs talent. I don't think it's going to be an overnight fix on offense (though it could be!) and much like the Sox, I would prefer they accumulate talent for a reasonable cost where they can rather than hoping that they suddenly hit on a bunch of draft picks and FA in a single year.
Yeah I think accumulating talent who can help the team win in 2026 and beyond is what I’d like to see them focus on. I’d rather one or two big swings at younger guys, even if they’re on defense, than sinking money on 30+ year old offensive guys.

The team is unlikely to be competitive for the next year or two. Wasting cap space on guys who aren’t long term pieces simply because they’re better than in house options doesn’t seem like the best use of cap space.
 

DourDoerr

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No thank you. The year away did not benefit him. This would be an underwhelming move to try to shoe horn him in to being a number one. He isn’t. He honestly never was. He’s a 1B and while that’s more talent than we currently have I’m not sold he has the drive or the commitment to improve. Hard pass.
Agreed. That’s a lot of dough/years for a 30yo who’s not what we’d like him to be. I’d rather keep the powder dry for a WR that may shake out for contract/cap reasons. Our picks are now at the beginning of a round rather than the end, so they have real value to trade partners. If we have to spend, I’d rather lock up some of our younger guys and free up money down the road.
 

PRabbit

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Apr 3, 2022
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Paying guys like Ridley 20m/year is a great way to lock yourself into mediocrity.

Hard pass.

Edit: I'd go for 3/40-45.
 

BigSoxFan

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Had like 8-9 games where he had 40 or fewer yards. Turns 30 this year. Doesn’t make sense for where this team currently is.
 

j44thor

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Aside from Gabe Davis another reclamation project I'd take a shot on is Donovan Peoples Jones. Had a good season in CLE two years ago but did nothing this past season. Still very young and should come cheap. He's a big deep ball specialist similar to Parker but much younger so there is potential he hasn't hit his ceiling yet.
 

ElcaballitoMVP

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I guess it depends. If the plan is to draft a Daniels/Maye/McCarthy and you aren't planning on playing them in year 1, I'd pass on Ridley and look for a younger/longer-term option over the next year.

If you're going to hand the job over to the rookie right away or after a month or two, I'd want as many good WR's on my roster as possible, so I'd be fine with Ridley on a $7M cap hit.

I don't think Ridley is the answer at WR, he's probably more of a #2 who will give you the occasional big play/game, but he'd be an improvement over what they currently have and they can easily handle the cap hit.

If I am signing him, I would offer a frontloaded deal where Ridley gets about $15M of that $27.5M guaranteed in year 1 and if he busts, makes it a lot easier to get rid of him after year 1 or 2 ($15M, 8M, 4.5M).

I'd also be fine instead going the trade route and looking for a Courtland Sutton type and getting him signed to a long-term deal. Either way, they need to add WR talent if they're drafting a rookie QB.
 

Arroyoyo

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Dec 13, 2021
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Honestly I thought his guaranteed money was originally projected to be higher. If the plan is to draft a QB first then an “X” WR second (whether it’s high in R2 or trading up late into R1), then I think signing him and pairing him with Douglas, the rookie, Boutte (in a ‘prove it’ year’) and maybe Bourne (if the price is right) would be a good start.

I’d cut Parker and Juju and just eat the dead money. Now’s the time. We need to develop young talent at the position, not waste roster spots on guys that are beyond cooked.
 

chilidawg

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The Athletic has free agent ranking up, Ridley ends up at 13, and the top WR.

Ridley represents the best combination of size, speed and hands in this class. He comes off the ball quickly, eats up defenders' cushions and gets in and out of breaks very fast. His suddenness jumps out, and he runs a complete route tree with the body control to win versus zone and man. He will frustrate with occasional drops, but it's more about focus than hands. The Jaguars owe the Falcons a 2024 third-round pick from the 2022 trade for Ridley, but if they extend him before free agency opens, that would become a second-rounder. He should hit the market atop a wideout class that was thinned by the franchise tag. — Mueller

https://theathletic.com/5318482/2024/03/10/nfl-free-agent-rankings-tracker/
 

Cellar-Door

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The Athletic has free agent ranking up, Ridley ends up at 13, and the top WR.

Ridley represents the best combination of size, speed and hands in this class. He comes off the ball quickly, eats up defenders' cushions and gets in and out of breaks very fast. His suddenness jumps out, and he runs a complete route tree with the body control to win versus zone and man. He will frustrate with occasional drops, but it's more about focus than hands. The Jaguars owe the Falcons a 2024 third-round pick from the 2022 trade for Ridley, but if they extend him before free agency opens, that would become a second-rounder. He should hit the market atop a wideout class that was thinned by the franchise tag. — Mueller

https://theathletic.com/5318482/2024/03/10/nfl-free-agent-rankings-tracker/
tells you a lot about the class (and how they are ranking positional value) that Darnell Mooney is #19.
Ridley is a solid WR, he's also going to be 30 this season and is more a #2 than a #1 at this point and likely to keep declining. He's the best WR in the FA class, but that likely just means he'll be wildly overpaid.
 

Kenny F'ing Powers

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tells you a lot about the class (and how they are ranking positional value) that Darnell Mooney is #19.
Ridley is a solid WR, he's also going to be 30 this season and is more a #2 than a #1 at this point and likely to keep declining. He's the best WR in the FA class, but that likely just means he'll be wildly overpaid.
The teams WR talents was putrid last season. What would you do to address it?
 

Cellar-Door

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The teams WR talents was putrid last season. What would you do to address it?
It was bad, not putrid, but it's biggest problem isn't really fixable in FA since they didn't have an X guy who could win 1v1 on top corners, which means they needed to be schemed open and thrown open, and we didn't scheme enough open throws and our QB situation was arguably the league's worst with open receivers not even looked at, throws not made and weak arms leading to teams ignoring the boundaries. Ridley was never really that, he's certainly not that now.

I'd resign Bourne (who was putting up a whopping 7 yards per game less than Ridley when he got hurt on nearly identical Y/tgt with shit QB play). I'd draft a WR in the top 3 rounds (maybe a second one in the middle/late rounds), I'd kick the tires on the younger WRs (Brown, Samuel, etc.) and if I didn't find a good price, I'd just sign Boyd to a 2 year deal at reasonable money.

To me the concern with Ridley is that he:
1. Is in his decline years
2. Isn't a #1 type WR
3. Is the "top option" in the class so will be overpaid.

It's just like Juju last year, or trading for Parker... just because a guy is the #1 option in the class and put up a good but not great year, you shouldn't expect him to be as good, and certainly not better coming to a likely worse QB situation.

So looking up the Ridley/Bourne stats was fun....
https://stathead.com/football/versus-finder.cgi?request=1&player_id1=BourKe00&player_id2=RidlCa00

They are far more similar for their careers than I would have thought, with Bourne trending up and Ridley down.
 

rodderick

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Eh, think he's a limited player who can't beat press and struggles as a pure outside threat and that's kind of what the Patriots need. To me he's basically Kendrick Bourne at this point, only with double Bourne's price tag. A good complementary receiver and nothing else. Would much rather they spend some draft capital to acquire a better player. They need a difference maker at that spot and Ridley isn't that guy, the odds of us whining over Daniels/Maye being in a bad situation because Calvin Ridley is their WR1 in eight months are very high. I thought he sabotaged Lawrence a whole lot in the Jags games I watched last year.
 

BigSoxFan

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Eh, think he's a limited player who can't beat press and struggles as a pure outside threat and that's kind of what the Patriots need. To me he's basically Kendrick Bourne at this point, only with double Bourne's price tag. A good complementary receiver and nothing else. Would much rather they spend some draft capital to acquire a better player. They need a difference maker at that spot and Ridley isn't that guy, the odds of us whining over Daniels/Maye being in a bad situation because Calvin Ridley is their WR1 in eight months are very high. I thought he sabotaged Lawrence a whole lot in the Jags games I watched last year.
Yeah, I can’t get there with Ridley. A pretty good WR but turns 30 this year and just isn’t the high impact guy we need. He had some big games but he also disappeared quite a bit. I also have concerns about his motivation after getting the bag. There are many other good FA options so I don’t really have the answer here but he scares me.
 

Gash Prex

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So long as it’s not a long term commitment - I’m fine with a signing. I don’t think it really meaningfully moves the needle but the Pats need talent on the offensive side of the ball and need to spend some money.
 

Arroyoyo

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Dec 13, 2021
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Man I wanted him pretty bad until a few weeks ago I found out this is his age-30 season. Now I’m worried we’ll end up with Juju 2.0 in a couple of years.

I’m more interested in a long-shot trade of Brandon Aiyuk. If we can get him for a ~third this year that’d be a dream acquisition.
 

Cellar-Door

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How anyone can argue the WR corps wasn't putrid last year is beyond me. I mean...it was TERRIBLE. Praying it can't get worse.
production maybe, talent was just below average to bad.
We really need to stop acquiring players, watch them be much worse here and say "wow turns out that guy sucks"... one of the major problems with our WR corps the last 2 years has been QB play (and in 2022 playcalling), it's not a good group, bottom 5-7 of the league for sure, but it's a bunch of guys who have been better elsewhere and likely still would be better elsewhere. Some QBs and coordinators elevate WRs, ours have made them worse. Not many WRs in the NFL are just QB/scheme proof, you have to scheme them open and throw them open (also hit them when they win, something that the tape shows we weren't doing last year. Go look at some of those Mac/Zappe breakdowns, open guys not getting the ball was a common theme).
 

Justthetippett

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production maybe, talent was just below average to bad.
We really need to stop acquiring players, watch them be much worse here and say "wow turns out that guy sucks"... one of the major problems with our WR corps the last 2 years has been QB play (and in 2022 playcalling), it's not a good group, bottom 5-7 of the league for sure, but it's a bunch of guys who have been better elsewhere and likely still would be better elsewhere. Some QBs and coordinators elevate WRs, ours have made them worse. Not many WRs in the NFL are just QB/scheme proof, you have to scheme them open and throw them open (also hit them when they win, something that the tape shows we weren't doing last year. Go look at some of those Mac/Zappe breakdowns, open guys not getting the ball was a common theme).
I'd be happy to staple Parker to a third round pick in return for Higgins to test this theory.
 

Deathofthebambino

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How anyone can argue the WR corps wasn't putrid last year is beyond me. I mean...it was TERRIBLE. Praying it can't get worse.
Not only were they awful, they couldn't stay on the damn field. Everyone talked about the revolving door with the offensive line, but the receivers weren't a whole lot better.

The Pats leading receiver in games played was Pop Douglas, a 6th round rookie, who had 3 games where he was inactive, and in a four week stretch, he played the following snap counts after Bill benched him for fumbling (8%, 24%, 33%, 21%). That's the guy that played the most games for the Pats at WR.

Coming in 2nd on the list, with "only" 4 games missed was the aforementioned Parker. In addition to those 4 missed games, he had 3 other games where he didn't play even 50% of the snaps.

Our 3rd most durable receiver last season, coming in with only 6 games missed entirely, was JuJu. He had 3 others where he played less than 50% of the snaps.

Tyquan Thornton managed to only miss 8 of the 17 games, so that's good. He played more than half.

The same can't be said for, IMO, our best receiver, Kendrick Bourne, who missed 9 of the 17 games.

Call it bad luck, or whatever, but this is a bad receiving group when healthy, and an even worse one when they couldn't even get on the field.
 

tims4wins

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Not only were they awful, they couldn't stay on the damn field. Everyone talked about the revolving door with the offensive line, but the receivers weren't a whole lot better.

The Pats leading receiver in games played was Pop Douglas, a 6th round rookie, who had 3 games where he was inactive, and in a four week stretch, he played the following snap counts after Bill benched him for fumbling (8%, 24%, 33%, 21%). That's the guy that played the most games for the Pats at WR.

Coming in 2nd on the list, with "only" 4 games missed was the aforementioned Parker. In addition to those 4 missed games, he had 3 other games where he didn't play even 50% of the snaps.

Our 3rd most durable receiver last season, coming in with only 6 games missed entirely, was JuJu. He had 3 others where he played less than 50% of the snaps.

Tyquan Thornton managed to only miss 8 of the 17 games, so that's good. He played more than half.

The same can't be said for, IMO, our best receiver, Kendrick Bourne, who missed 9 of the 17 games.

Call it bad luck, or whatever, but this is a bad receiving group when healthy, and an even worse one when they couldn't even get on the field.
Apropos of nothing, the food here is no good - and such small portions too!
 

Deathofthebambino

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The non-playoff team tax. Go call Hollywood Brown.
I have owned Hollywood Brown in a SoSH Dynasty fantasy league since he entered the NFL

I wouldn't sign him if I were the Pats for what Mooney just got from Atlanta.

At this point, I think you mess around the cheaper options who provide almost the same productivity (ie. Curtis Samuel and some other guys @Cellar-Door has been talking about) and hope to hit a home run in the draft (but IMO, they need to go at least 2, if not 3 WR's in the draft, pick one early and a couple more late). Everything else is too expensive, and you end up with more JuJu's and Parkers.
 

Cellar-Door

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I have owned Hollywood Brown in a SoSH Dynasty fantasy league since he entered the NFL

I wouldn't sign him if I were the Pats for what Mooney just got from Atlanta.

At this point, I think you mess around the cheaper options who provide almost the same productivity (ie. Curtis Samuel and some other guys @Cellar-Door has been talking about) and hope to hit a home run in the draft (but IMO, they need to go at least 2, if not 3 WR's in the draft, pick one early and a couple more late). Everything else is too expensive, and you end up with more JuJu's and Parkers.
I'd definitely consider Brown.
On the one hand he's had a ton of injuries which is scary.
On the other, he should be right in his prime and when he's on the field he's a dynamic talent (arguably better than Ridley), and his injuries are built into the price.
 

Deathofthebambino

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I'd definitely consider Brown.
On the one hand he's had a ton of injuries which is scary.
On the other, he should be right in his prime and when he's on the field he's a dynamic talent (arguably better than Ridley), and his injuries are built into the price.
I'd consider Brown too, but I wouldn't pay him over $10mil per season, and I think he's going to cost more than that, considering Mooney just got $13mil AAV.

One of the stats I look to consistently when it comes to receivers is the QB rating when the ball is thrown to them.

Here are Brown's stats (note, the first 3 years were in Baltimore with Lamar):

123.2 (on only 46 catches, rookie year, SSS)
92.5
87.9
64.0
72.8

Here's Mooney in Chicago:

85.9
67.4
87,7
57.7


Now, to put this in context for Pats fans, here is Kendrick Bourne catching passes from Mac Jones/Zappe:

132.1
90.1
90.4

Don't like Bourne, here's Parker:

90.6
66.8

Here's Calvin Ridley:

124.4
113.5
101.0
79.1
90.2



I'll take Ridley all day long at 3/39. Hollywood Brown isn't the same guy he was that rookie year in Baltimore. He's never even been close to that guy, IMO.
 

leftfieldlegacy

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Todays the day. Bring me Ridley or bring me death...of Juju.
The Jags are just waiting until tomorrow to finalize their deal with Ridley. The trade that brought him to Jax included a provision that would send a 2nd round pick back to ATL if Ridley was re-signed before the start of the new NFL year (tomorrow) but that pick becomes a 3rd rounder if he is signed after the new year. Schefter reported part of this here
If Ridley, who is in the final year of his contract, re-signs with Jacksonville, the conditional pick to the Falcons would become a second-rounder, sources said. Ridley is not expected to sign an extension at any point this season and will wait until after the season to begin negotiations, sources said.
The rest he reported today on the NFL network.
I think Ridley is just playing the Pats to squeeze a little more cash out of the Jags.