One NFL insider thinks an interesting AFC North team could make a move to sign Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady.
For a piece published Thursday, Jason La Canfora of The Washington Post named the Baltimore Ravens as "a serious long shot" to acquire Brady if the seven-time Super Bowl champion doesn't return to the Buccaneers and doesn't sign with the Las Vegas Raiders, San Francisco 49ers, or Miami Dolphins.
The Ravens reportedly aren't close to signing Lamar Jackson to a long-term extension, and Pro Football Talk's Mike Florio believes the one-time NFL Most Valuable Player could end up in Miami. That would leave a Baltimore team that finished this past season at 10-7 and in possession of a wild-card playoff berth in need of a new QB1.
La Canfora pointed out that the Ravens "present the opportunity for a veteran quarterback to be protected by a strong offensive line and premier running game, with an elite defense, too." He also noted Brady could help install a new offense in Baltimore now that the club and offensive coordinator Greg Roman have officially parted ways.
Arizona Cardinals star wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins is reportedly available and could become a top target for Brady with Baltimore. The 45-year-old in the twilight of his career could also embrace the idea of working with head coach John Harbaugh, who already has one Super Bowl title on his résumé.
Additionally, La Canfora ruled out the New York Jets, New Orleans Saints, Tennessee Titans, New England Patriots, and Carolina Panthers as potential destinations for Brady for varying reasons.
La Canfora is quite familiar with the Ravens and has repeatedly hinted that Baltimore and Jackson will go in different directions this spring. Brady is set to hit free agency when the new NFL year opens in March, and Ravens executive vice president and general manager Eric DeCosta may believe his team was merely a legitimate starting quarterback away from turning a seven-point playoff loss at the Cincinnati Bengals into a win.
Meanwhile, the 49ers could stick with breakout star Brock Purdy through at least the summer months. If Brady wishes to stay on the East Coast to remain close to his children, signing with the Ravens could make the most sense regarding his pursuit of an eighth championship ring.
For what it's worth, La Canfora was the first person to accurately report about Brady's retirement last January.
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