Jerry Jeudy could be on the move. Earlier this week, ESPN’s Dianna Russini reported the Denver Broncos have received calls about both Jeudy and Courtland Sutton. While the Broncos are “not shopping” either receiver, Denver reportedly set the asking price for Jeudy at a first-round pick, per Jeff Howe of the Athletic.
Jeudy, the No. 15 pick in the 2020 draft, has been impacted by injuries during his three-year NFL career, but he’s been effective despite dealing with lackluster quarterback play. Last season, Jeudy led the Broncos in receptions (67), yards (972), and touchdowns (six). Among the 84 NFL receivers with at least 50 targets in 2022, Jeudy ranked 12th in yards per route run, just ahead of luminaries Amari Cooper, Terry McLaurin, and DeVonta Smith.
Given that production, Denver might be reluctant to trade Jeudy, especially if the team believes Sean Payton can craft a more efficient offensive attack than his predecessor. Indeed, Mike Klis of 9News indicated Thursday that the Broncos could hold onto both Jeudy and Sutton. Still, plenty of clubs should be interested in acquiring Jeudy for the right price.
Jerry Jeudy’s Best Landing Spots
New England Patriots
The Patriots are among the teams that have inquired about Jeudy, according to Howe, but New England likely expressed interest before they signed JuJu Smith-Schuster to a three-year contract on Wednesday. Bill Belichick’s team also added former Dolphins tight end Mike Gesicki on Friday, giving the Pats another talented receiving option.
However, New England still needs outside receivers as it reworks its offense under new play-caller Bill O’Brien. DeVante Parker, whom the Patriots acquired from Miami last offseason, has topped 800 yards just once in his seven-year career. Second-round rookie Tyquan Thornton showed flashes after returning from injury, but his 48.9% catch rate was among the lowest in the league.
Would Jeudy overlap with Smith-Schuster? Both receivers might be better from the slot, but they’ve also seen a ton of snaps on the outside. There’s some redundancy here, but given the state of the free agent wide receiver market, the Pats can’t afford to be too choosy.
The Ravens traded Marquise Brown, their most productive wide receiver, to the Cardinals during the 2022 draft, leaving Lamar Jackson with Rashod Bateman and Devin Duvernay as his top options heading into the regular season. After Bateman and Duvernay suffered injuries, Demarcus Robinson — who couldn’t cut it as the Raiders’ WR4 and didn’t join Baltimore’s roster until August — led the Ravens’ wideouts in receptions and yardage.
At Baltimore’s year-end press conference, head coach John Harbaugh admitted his club’s wide receiver depth chart is a problem.
“The one area that needs to be built is the wide receiver room, so that will be a new room, basically,” Harbaugh said in January. “There will be pieces of it still there — you know the guys — and then we’ll be adding a lot of pieces to that room, and there [will] be competition, too. So, that’ll be the room that will start together in this new offense, and we’ll build with those guys.”
Most of the Ravens’ focus has likely been on franchise-tagged quarterback Lamar Jackson, but they’ve done next to nothing in free agency. Jeudy would add a young, talented presence in Baltimore and bring a new dimension to first-year OC Todd Monken’s scheme. Perhaps Denver would be willing to consider a version of Baltimore’s Brown trade, where the Ravens sent a third-round pick to Arizona along with “Hollywood” in exchange for a first-rounder.
The Browns don’t own a first-round pick in 2022, so they might not have the draft capital required to acquire Jeudy. But Cleveland could send a package of picks to Denver to make a trade work.
While the Browns like to deploy two-tight end formations, they used three wide receivers on 57% of their offensive plays last season.
Cooper, whom Cleveland picked up from Dallas for two fifths and a swap of sixths, proved to be a steal as he posted a 78-1,160-9 line, but the Browns could stand to add another WR to compete with Donovan Peoples-Jones and David Bell.
Although Cleveland could hesitate to sacrifice more draft capital after giving up so many picks to land Deshaun Watson last year, the Browns’ front office might also view Jeudy as a young asset that can’t be found on the free agent market.
The Cowboys were among the teams that sent an offer for Jeudy at the 2022 trade deadline, but Dallas couldn’t work out a deal with Denver.
CeeDee Lamb, chosen two picks after Jeudy in 2020, has developed into a star, but the Cowboys could use reinforcements at receiver. Michael Gallup never looked right in his return from a torn ACL and finished with the fourth-worst yards per route run mark in the NFL. Third-round rookie Jalen Tolbert was a regular healthy scratch, while Dallas has already lost free agent Noah Brown to the Texans.
Lamb should earn more than $23 million on his eventual extension, so the Cowboys may not want to acquire another receiver who will soon be in line for a new contract. But if Jerry Jones is truly in win-now mode, Jeudy would make sense in Dallas.
New York Giants
Like their NFC East rivals, the Giants also called about Jeudy at last year’s trade deadline.
“Part of my job and our personnel staff is to assign value to players,” general manager Joe Schoen said after the deadline. “If you’re going to trade for a player, what value are you comfortable with? We had several conversations with teams on multiple positions, and the price point didn’t match up, and things just didn’t work out.”
New York has since added to its pass-catching corps by acquiring tight end Darren Waller from the Raiders, signing former Colts wideout Parris Campbell, and retaining Darius Slayton and Sterling Shepard. With Wan’Dale Robinson and Isaiah Hodgins also set to return next season, the Giants have a workable receiving room.
However, Jeudy would represent a significant upgrade over Big Blue’s current options. Robinson is the only Giants wideout guaranteed to be on the roster into 2024, so Jeudy could offer New York a longer-term solution.
Green Bay Packers
As they sort out an impending Aaron Rodgers trade, the Packers have been among the quietest teams in free agency. Green Bay has made two moves: re-signed long snapper Matt Orzech and retained return man Keisean Nixon.
While the Packers already have two promising young receivers in Christian Watson and Romeo Doubs, Green Bay should be interested in surrounding presumed starter Jordan Love with as many weapons as possible.
Watson and Doubs are entering the second seasons of their rookie contracts, so the Packers could extend Jeudy immediately while their second-year WRs are still on cheap deals.
Green Bay might have two top-15 picks once they send Rodgers to New York, but that might be too rich for Jeudy. A second-rounder, or a future first, might be more palatable if the Packers want to work out a trade with the Broncos.