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Titans Surprise, Sign Calvin Ridley — Fantasy Fallout

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(FTN Fantasy is reacting to all the big fantasy news of the offseason! Follow along in our transaction tracker.)

The Titans made a splash a few hours after the new league year officially started Wednesday, signing former Falcons and Jaguars receiver Calvin Ridley to a reported four-year deal worth up to $92 million, with $50 million guaranteed. Ridley immediately steps in alongside DeAndre Hopkins to form one of the highest-profile receiver duos in the league.

 

Ridley played 2023 with the Jaguars after missing most of 2021 and all of 2022 with injuries and a gambling suspension. His season was viewed as a disappoint, though he did end the season with 1,016 yards, 8 touchdowns and a WR18 finish. It was a step down from his 1,374 yards and WR5 finish in 2020, but Ridley did show he has enough juice to be a relevant receiver.

The Jaguars already signed Gabe Davis away from Buffalo in free agency, but they were still rumored to be interested in retaining Ridley to combine with Davis and Christian Kirk. With Ridley leaving, the team will likely hold onto Zay Jones. Kirk, Davis, Jones and TE Evan Engram might not be the best group of pass-catchers in the league, but it’s still plenty for QB Trevor Lawrence to work with. Ridley was also rumored to be a target of the New England Patriots.

Meanwhile, Ridley lands in Tennessee, where he will battle for the role of No. 1 receiver with Hopkins, who put up 1,057 yards and 7 touchdowns last year in his first year in Tennessee, good for a WR22 finish. Hopkins is nearly three years older than Ridley, so the duo will be older than most, but if both still have their juice, it could mean very good things for Levis, who passed for 1,808 yards and 8 touchdowns against 4 interceptions in nine games as a rookie in 2023. Four of those touchdowns came in his first start, so over his last eight games, he only totaled 4 passing scores.

The Titans appear to be going with the “If you aren’t sure if the QB is the guy, give him enough weaponry that it doesn’t matter” route by adding Ridley. They still have 2022 first-rounder Treylon Burks on the roster, and TE Chigoziem Okonkwo was a popular breakout pick last season who could still develop. The team also signed former Cowboys running back Tony Pollard in free agency to go along with 2023 rookie Tyjae Spears, and the Titans have been addressing the offensive line as well, signing Lloyd Cushenberry and hiring Bill Callahan as OL coach. Add it all up, and there’s a chance for the Titans to be a sneaky-good offense in 2024 if everything breaks right.

And there’s one more piece of fallout from this move – with the Jaguars not extending Ridley, their compensation to the Falcons from the Ridley trade remains a third-round pick (79 overall), with the Jaguars retaining their second-rounder.

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