New Jaguars WR Calvin Ridley has Davante Adams’ seal of approval

Las Vegas Raiders wide receiver Davante Adams (17) at Allegiant Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports
Las Vegas Raiders wide receiver Davante Adams (17) at Allegiant Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports /

The Jacksonville Jaguars made a move thinking about the future when they acquired wide receiver Calvin Ridley from the Atlanta Falcons in exchange for a couple of draft picks before the trade deadline. Ridley is currently serving a one-year suspension for gambling on NFL games in 2021, so the Jags will need to wait until 2023 to see a return on their investment. Nevertheless, they should feel good about their acquisition knowing Ridley has Davante Adam’s seal of approval.

Back in 2021, CBS Sports asked Adams, then a member of the Green Bay Packers, who the top five route runners in the league were and Ridley was among the players he mentioned. The others were himself, Keenan Allen (Los Angeles Chargers), Stefon Diggs (Buffalo Bills), and Justin Jefferson (Minnesota Vikings).

Adams was coming off a season in which he hauled in 115 receptions for 1,374 yards with 18 touchdowns, so his opinion carried plenty of weight when it came to discussing who the best receivers in the game were. Earlier this year, the former Fresno State Bulldog once again called Ridley one of the best route runners in the league, this time though, he told Matt Lombardo of Heavy Sports that he was top 3.

A second-round pick by the Packers in 2014, Adams has become arguably the best receiver in the NFL. Although he only had a combined 88 catches for 929 yards with four touchdowns in his first two seasons, he had a breakout year in 2016, hauling in 75 receptions for 997 yards with 12 touchdowns.

The five-time Pro Bowl selection was traded to the Las Vegas Raiders earlier this year and is once again on pace to log over 1,000 yards and more than 10 touchdowns this season. Coincidentally, he will face off against the Jags in Week 9 at TIAA Bank Field. Here’s the 2021 clip of Adams’ discussing the top 5 route-runner in the league.

The Jaguars won’t know if the Calvin Ridley trade will work out until 2023

The downside of trading for Calvin Ridley is that the Jaguars’ brass can’t get in touch with him until he’s reinstated, which is one of the reasons Eric Edholm of NFL Media gave them a ‘C’ for the move.

Edholm also points out that Jacksonville gave up “assets today for a player that won’t contribute at all in 2022” but the truth is that Ridley could cost as little as a couple of late-round selections if things don’t work out, so this is a low-risk move that could pay off significantly.

Prior to the suspension, Ridley retired in the middle of the 2021 season to work on his mental health. It’s hard to know what was going through his head at the time but he’s had more than enough time to work on himself, so he should be ready to contribute next year.

The Jaguars revamped their wide receiver corps in the offseason when they signed Christian Kirk and Zay Jones. Ridley won’t join the group until next year but given his talent, he could turn the group into one of the best in the league.

Trending. 3 takeaways from the Calvin Ridley trade. light