Baltimore Ravens: Three Free Agent Wide Receiver Options

Yahoo Contributor Network

COMMENTARY | After releasing veteran fullback Vonta Leach on Tuesday, the Baltimore Ravens have placed themselves in an ideal position financially. Once first-round pick Matt Elam is signed, the Ravens will have over $5 million in salary cap room.

With the financial flexibility, the Ravens may start long-term contract negotiations with restricted free agents Dennis Pitta and Arthur Jones. Another option is adding a veteran wide receiver.

The battle for the second starting wide receiver job in Baltimore will be the most intriguing position battle to follow during training camp, and adding a talented veteran could help heighten the competition.

Here are three wide receivers on the market that the Ravens could target:

Brandon Lloyd

The most talented wide receiver on the free agent market right now is undoubtedly Lloyd. He may be past his prime at the age of 32, but that didn't stop him from catching 74 passes for 911 yards and four touchdowns in 2012. Despite never developing a rhythm with New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady, Lloyd still easily emerged as the team's second-best receiver.

His last 1,000-yard season came in 2010, and it is unlikely he ever reaches that feat again in his career. There are locker room concerns that have scared Lloyd away from teams, but if Baltimore feels he fits in with the team, he would quickly become the favorite for the available starting receiver role.

Laurent Robinson

After a breakout 2011 season with the Dallas Cowboys that included 11 touchdown receptions, Robinson inked a large deal with the Jacksonville Jaguars in free agency. However, after just one year in Jacksonville, Robinson is back on the market.

Struggling with injuries and poor quarterback play, Robinson failed to assert himself as a go-to receiver in Jacksonville's offense, catching just 24 passes in seven games.

If he is healthy, though, he can still provide value as a legitimate contender for the second starting receiver job in Baltimore. Prior to departing for Jacksonville, Robinson's statistics steadily increased for three consecutive years. The 28-year-old may still have a few more good seasons in him, and could be a beneficial option.

Brandon Stokley

While Lloyd and Robinson would be legitimate contenders to be starters, adding Stokley would be more of a depth move than an upgrade. The 37-year-old had a career rebirth in 2012 with the Denver Broncos, catching 45 passes for 544 yards.

Playing with longtime teammate Peyton Manning, Stokley was able to reassert himself as a valuable third option for an offense. He even caught three passes for 27 yards and a touchdown against the Ravens in the playoffs.

Could a Stokley return to Baltimore be an option? Stokley spent the first four seasons of his career in Baltimore, and he may be inclined to play possibly his last season in the league with the team he won his first Super Bowl with.

Stokley likely wouldn't be anything more than a fourth receiver option for the team, but he may still be a valuable veteran addition to a young group of receivers in Baltimore.

Kyle Casey is a sports writer living in Baltimore, Md. He maintains his own football site, End Zone Report, and contributes to Russell Street Report, a Baltimore Ravens blog.

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