Sammy Watkins, Ravens Reportedly Agree to 1-Year, $6M Contract

Mike Chiari@mikechiariFeatured ColumnistMarch 26, 2021

Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver Sammy Watkins (14) runs the ball up the field during the second half of the NFL Super Bowl 54 football game between the San Francisco 49ers and Kansas City Chiefs Sunday, Feb. 2, 2020, in Miami Gardens, Fla. The Kansas City Chiefs won 31-20. (AP Photo/Steve Luciano)
Steve Luciano/Associated Press

Veteran wide receiver Sammy Watkins is reportedly joining the Baltimore Ravens on a one-year contract. 

NFL Network's Ian Rapoport reported Friday that Watkins is expected to sign with the Ravens. ESPN's Adam Schefter added the deal will be worth up to $6 million with $5 million fully guaranteed. 

The 27-year-old spent the past three seasons with the Kansas City Chiefs after signing a three-year, $48 million deal with the team prior to the 2018 campaign.

While Watkins was never better than the No. 3 option in the passing game behind wideout Tyreek Hill and tight end Travis Kelce, he provided quarterback Patrick Mahomes with a dangerous weapon when healthy.

Injuries have been a major stumbling block for the Clemson product throughout his career, though. He missed 11 games in his three seasons as a member of the Buffalo Bills and one game in his one season with the Los Angeles Rams.

In three campaigns with the Chiefs, Watkins sat out a total of 14 regular-season contests, including six each in 2018 and 2020.

His best season with Kansas City came in 2019, when he finished with 52 receptions for 673 yards and three touchdowns in 14 regular-season games. He also played a huge role in its run to a Super Bowl LIV victory, making 14 grabs for 288 yards and one touchdown in three playoff games.

Watkins has shown a penchant for performing well on the big stage, as he had 10 catches for 176 yards in two playoff games in 2018 as well. A calf injury nagged him late in the 2020 season, though, and caused him to miss all but one of the Chiefs' playoff games.

With Hill, Kelce and Mecole Hardman all firmly ahead of him in the pecking order in 2020, the Fort Myers, Florida, native finished with 37 receptions for 421 yards and two touchdowns in 14 games.

While Watkins has made big plays at times over the past four years, his best seasons to date remain his first two years in the league with Buffalo.

The Bills selected him with the No. 4 overall pick in the 2014 NFL draft, and it initially looked like a great investment, as he made 65 receptions for 982 yards and six touchdowns as a rookie.

He followed that up with his best season in 2015, recording 60 receptions for 1,047 yards and nine touchdowns despite missing three games.

After an injury-plagued 2016 season, Watkins was traded to the Rams, where he ended up spending just one season.

Getting back to the level of play he showed in 2014 and 2015 may not be in the cards, but perhaps he will have a better chance to make it happen with the Ravens rather than a Chiefs team that has so many weapons.

After missing out on some of the top free-agent wide receivers, like Kenny Golladay, Corey Davis and Curtis Samuel, the Ravens are hoping they landed a value signing in Watkins.

Quarterback Lamar Jackson undoubtedly needed another weapon to go along with wide receiver Marquise Brown and tight end Mark Andrews, and Watkins can be that guy when healthy.

In terms of opportunity, the Ravens represent a good one for Watkins. He could be a big part of the offense since Baltimore is lacking at wide receiver.    


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