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Should the Ravens pull the trigger on a likely departing Landry?

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Pull the lever on the slot machine?

NFL: Pro Bowl-NFC vs AFC Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

It’s official: The Miami Dolphins have given wide receiver Jarvis Landry the opportunity to seek out and negotiate a trade to another club.

The speculation on where the steady handed slot man will land has raged for weeks on end. The connection between him and the Baltimore Ravens seemed to be as strong as any of the hypothetical scenarios. So now that Landry will get a chance to dictate his landing spot via trade, the question that remains is should the Ravens pull out all the stops to ensure that he will be wearing purple and black in 2018?

The answer “yes” will hit you like a ton of bricks, if you seek out the Ravens receiving depth chart at the moment. The one viable option is Jeremy Maclin who was recently reported as a probable cut to clear salary cap space, and beyond him are total unmitigated question marks.

So while “yes, they should trade for him” is the obvious answer at a glance, things get a bit more complicated once the logistics come into the picture. The Dolphins tagged Landry at a $16 million figure for 2018, which sets his market well out of Baltimore’s current reach.

However, it doesn’t totally rule them out right away. They could theoretically trade for Landry and get a long term deal done, with it reported that he’s seeking out a contract similar to Green Bay’s Davante Adams, putting him in the $14.5 million dollar range.

That figure isn’t that much more ideal, but if Baltimore is serious about getting some help for Joe Flacco, removing deadweight like Maclin and Danny Woodhead (who was also a suggested cut) may give them the relief they need to do so.

So if it could realistically happen, then what kind of a price would Landry fetch in the form of a trade? One compensation model to look at would be a trade that the Ravens made for a similar player in the past.

That would be wide receiver Anquan Boldin, who they shipped third and fourth round picks in the 2010 NFL draft to Arizona in order to acquire. It’s likely that Miami would be seeking more for a player whose value they just set at $16 million dollars, but the catch there is that they are giving him the okay to leave town.

With all of these factors in mind, if Landry were to want to come to Baltimore, a second round pick could very realistically be agreed upon as a possible price tag. Miami would probably be happy to accept that as would Baltimore, who’ve shown dire levels of incompetence at drafting receivers almost every single chance they get.

A finished product at the position of greatest need entering the prime of his career is something that the Ravens can’t afford to pass up right now. Ozzie Newsome has to be ready to set Eric Decosta up for future success, and acquiring a talent like Landry entering his second contract for draft capital is certainly a good start.

To put it simply, the Ravens can hardly afford to keep getting cute when it comes to getting pass catchers. They seem to know the need for them is now, and if giving up a second round pick is what it takes, then Ravens fans should be all for it.