The Baltimore Ravens might have to get creative to fill some of their needs this offseason, quite possibly the biggest of which is the addition of another playmaking wide receiver.
In recent weeks ahead of the NFL offseason getting underway, plenty of folks have had opinions about what needs to happen for the Ravens this offseason in order to land one of the best wide receivers. But what if the team doesn’t like any of the free agency options on the market? In that case, a trade could be the only way to fill the hole.
Recently, Bleacher Report took a look at the top trade move every team should make this offseason, and when it came to the Ravens, writer Brent Sobleski believes dealing for a big play player from the Minnesota Vikings makes all the sense. In this case, it’s wideout Adam Thielen who Sobleski believes should be targeted by teams, and specifically, the Ravens.
“The Baltimore Ravens require more from their wide receivers to fully capitalize on their unique offense, as those on the outside haven’t opened up the scheme over the last two seasons. Even so, general manager Eric DeCosta isn’t ready to acknowledge the position is a significant problem.
“I thought the young guys emerged and played pretty well,” DeCosta told reporters last month. “Again, it’s not a traditional offense, so they’re being asked to do some different things.”
Maybe Baltimore won’t address the position in free agency or the draft. But DeCosta couldn’t overlook a wide receiver the caliber of Adam Thielen.
With Lamar Jackson still under his rookie contract, the time is right to add a high-quality option to help the quarterback realize his full potential. It doesn’t hurt that Thielen would be a perfect fit since he comes from another run-first offense.”
Adding Thielen to the mix would give the Ravens the type of down-field threat the team could crave in order to turn things around on the offensive side of the ball. Depending on compensation, it could be just the move the Ravens need in order to get things turned around this offseason. It was a struggle at times for the Ravens last year passing the ball, so Thielen could be a good player to jump-start things.
Ravens Had Adam Thielen on Radar Before
When discussing the trade deadline deal for Yannick Ngakoue with the Minnesota Vikings months ago, the Ravens apparently asked about a pair of big play pass catchers the Vikings have. Wideout Adam Thielen was a topic of conversation between the teams, as was tight end Irv Smith, though a deal was not reached for either of those players at the time.
That report came from Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports. In a piece by Mike Deprisco of NBC Washington, La Canfora’s words from a radio show were presented. As he said, the blockbuster was at least discussed last week when the deal played out.
Here’s what Deprisco wrote based on La Canfora’s words:
“According to CBS Sports’ Jason La Canfora, Baltimore kicked the tires on two of Minnesota’s receiving threats during the Ngakoue trade talks.
“When they did the Ngakoue deal, they were talking about Adam Thielen, they were sniffing around on Irv Smith, their young tight end,” La Canfora told The Sports Junkies Thursday. “They couldn’t come to any sort of agreement there on value, but I wouldn’t be surprised in the least if they added a pass-catching tight end or wide receiver.”
Baltimore ended up signing Dez Bryant to the practice squad, but Bryant didn’t exactly re-invent the offense for the Ravens down the stretch which could leave them looking at Thielen again his offseason. It’s clear that the Ravens have been looking to prioritize another big move at wideout in order to give Lamar Jackson his best chance at being dynamic and making big plays on the field for the offense.
Knowing this past history, a Thielen trade might not be so farfetched.
Adam Thielen Stats
If it’s consistency the Ravens crave, Thielen could fit the bill in a big way for the team this offseason. The 30 year-old has cracked a pair of recent Pro Bowls in 2017 and 2018 and has also been an All-Pro for his work in the league. Statistically, he’s been one of the best finds at wideout during this stretch as well. Thielen has put up 5,240 yards and 39 touchdowns while playing for the Vikings, which are solid numbers. Getting him into the Ravens offense with Lamar Jackson might be even more exciting to watch.
Is Thielen going to be on the block this offseason? There’s no definitive word on that as of yet, but if he is, many see the Ravens as the perfect fit already.