With Matthew Stafford gone, what does Marvin Jones Jr.’s future look like?
By: Rachel Marie – @rachelmariesports
Matthew Stafford heads to Los Angeles, but what does the future have in store for one of his go-to wide receivers in Marvin Jones Jr.? The 30-year-old veteran receiver enters the 2021 offseason as an unrestricted free agent and many teams could greatly benefit from adding a reliable pass catcher like Jones.
Let’s talk the top 3 landing spots for Marvin Jones Jr.!
1. Los Angeles Rams
Let’s knock this one out first. How could it not make sense for Jones to follow Stafford over to the Rams? Cap space maybe, but still! The kind of chemistry this duo has found on the field is often irreplaceable. Except for one down season in 2018, we’ve gotten to watch the Stafford-Jones connection flourish and grow in Detroit.
Jones has posted both of his career-best seasons with Stafford at the helm. In 2017 Jones broke 1,000 yards, tallying 1,101 yards to be exact, and scored nine touchdowns. In 2020, Jones had the second-best season of his career putting up 978 yards and another nine touchdowns. Once again, Jones was easily Stafford’s favorite target.
Off the field, there are plenty of factors that make this a realistic landing spot for Jones as well. Consider the fact that he already owns a home in California. Add to that that Kelly Stafford and Jazmyn Jones, the wives of Matthew and Marvin, are besties. And top it all off with this detail: Jones has made it known via social media that he wants to follow Stafford there.
With Josh Reynolds, who has spent the past six seasons with the Rams, hitting free agency, I wouldn’t be surprised if Jones would take a seriously team-friendly deal to join Stafford in Los Angeles and have a legitimate shot at a Super Bowl in the 2021-22 season.
2. Tennessee Titans
The Titans are most likely going to end up losing their breakout wide receiver, Corey Davis, to free agency due to their lack of cap space. They’re about $7.3 million over the cap and, “can’t afford to get into a bidding war with another suitor” per TitansWire.
Jones is a statistically comparable player AND a cap-friendly solution. At 31, and with a wide array of wide receivers hitting free agency this offseason, this could bring Jones’ perceived market value down just enough for the Titans to bite.
Bill Barnwell thinks he could “be signed by Tennessee to a two-year deal worth $13.5 million, or $6.75 million annually.”
This would place Jones with a veteran QB in Ryan Tannehill who has only continued to get better statistically speaking over the past two seasons. Tannehill threw 28 touchdowns and only five interceptions in 2020. His touchdown percentage, interception percentage, and quarterback rating all ranked Top 5 in the league. Jones could easily help him to maintain those numbers.
3. Miami Dolphins
According to DolphinsWire, “The Miami Dolphins’ objective this offseason is clear: get better weapons for quarterback Tua Tagovailoa.” Besides Devante Parker and Mike Gesicki, the Dolphins pass catchers were a mess in 2020.
But here’s the team’s predicament: “The Dolphins are committed to over $25M in cap commitments to the wide receiver position in 2021 ($25,500,001 to be exact). That figure is the 11th highest allocation of salary cap for the wide receiver position in the NFL.” That’s $25 million in cap commitments for one of the worst producing receiving cores in the league. So, bringing in more talent for the wide receiver room seems both a wild idea and yet extremely necessary, right?
Like I said previously, Jones could sign a very cap friendly deal. 31 years old and a veteran. Heavy wide receiver presence in free agency. Could it end up the perfect storm for the Fins to end up with the veteran on a reasonable deal?
Imagine a revitalized receiver duo. Parker opposite Jones sounds like a legitimate threat indeed. Even in a down year Parker still posted a respectable 63 receptions for 793 yards and four touchdowns.