The Dolphins have hit a critical point in their relationship with receiver Jarvis Landry, who is about to hit unrestricted free agency after opening his career with four brilliant seasons and proving himself as the team’s most talented offensive player.
Miami can head off any drama by working out an agreement before free agency opens in March and it has the option to franchise/transition tag him, which would bring him back for one year.
In the end, it’s highly unlikely the Dolphins let Landry leave, but there will certainly be competitors intent on luring him. Here are five teams with good reasons and resources to make a run at him:
As has been the case for most of their recent history, the Bears need a spark on offense. Bringing in a talent like Landry would certainly help second-year quarterback Mitchell Trubisky’s development, and new coach Matt Nagy will likely be pushing for the team to add firepower on offense. Chicago has ample salary cap space heading into 2018 and minimal financial commitments at wide receiver.
Landry wants to get paid and win. At the moment, Jacksonville looks like a place he could do both. Despite being an absolute mess the last several years, the Jaguars are in the AFC championship game this weekend and look like they’re forming a nice core on offense. Blake Bortles isn’t far off of the quarterbacks Landry’s played with already and he’s younger. Jacksonville also has a strong running game with Leonard Fournette, which would make life easier for Landry.
New Orleans Saints
The Saints could entice Landry with the chance to come home, play for a winner and team up with a future Hall of Famer in Drew Brees. Brees is 39, but his window hasn’t closed yet considering he went for 4,334 yards and 23 touchdowns with a 103.9 passer rating last season. The Dolphins, by the way, haven’t had somebody put up yardage like that since Dan Marino.
The Redskins are all about making splashy free agent signings, and considering everyone in their power structure seems to be clinging to their job, they’re highly likely to be aggressive this spring. According to Spotrac, Washington goes into the offseason with almost $54 million in salary cap space. Whether the team retains Kirk Cousins or drafts a quarterback in the first round, Landry would be a desirable addition. The Redskins’ best receiver this year was slot man Jamison Crowder with 66 catches for 789 yards, and Landry would be a big upgrade.
San Francisco 49ers
This is a team everyone is high on at the moment, and the likely re-signing of Jimmy Garoppolo will make the 49ers a popular playoff pick for 2018. They have the most salary cap space in the league, they’re a team on the rise and they haven’t had a 1,000-yard receiver since 2014. San Francisco has one year left on Marquise Goodwin’s deal, but could get out of that for a minimal cap hit.
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