By Aaron Wilson
The Baltimore Sun
4:58 PM EDT, March 11, 2013
Now that the Super Bowl champion Ravens have traded veteran wide receiver Anquan Boldin to the San Francisco 49ers in exchange for a sixth-round draft pick after being unable to resolve a contract dispute, how will they replace him in the lineup.
The Ravens could showcase Torrey Smith more. Smith is a proven deep threat, but the Ravens could now use a possession receiver to complement him.
They have Pro Bowl kick returner Jacoby Jones under contract provided they pick up his $1 million roster bonus on March 16, which every indication points toward them doing.
Other receivers on the roster such as Tandon Doss remain unproven.
So, what about the free agent class?
One wide receiver that could fit the Ravens' scheme and that the team holds some interest in is St. Louis Rams free agent Danny Amendola, according to two sources.
Whether Amendola is in the Ravens' price range is highly debatable.
Word is he wants a contract similar to the five-year, $30.775 million contract recently signed by Miami Dolphins wide receiver Brian Hartline that included a $7 million signing bonus and $12.5 million in total guaranteed money.
That's fairly expensive and the Ravens are about $12.263 million under the salary cap currently without issuing their restricted free agent tenders yet.
Amendola, 27, isn't expected to be back with the Rams and will be pursued by the Philadelphia Eagles and several others, including the New England Patriots if they don't work something out with Wes Welker.
Amendola caught 63 passes for 666 yards last season, but was limited to 11 games due to injuries.
There are some durability concerns with Amendola, who's undersized and quick at 5-foot-11, 183 pounds.
The former Texas Tech standout broke his clavicle last season against the Arizona Cardinals, but came back three weeks later and caught 11 passes for 102 yards against the San Francisco 49ers.
Two seasons ago, Amendola broke his collarbone and didn't play the remainder of the season.
Three seasons ago, Amendola played every game and finished with 85 catches for 698 yards and three touchdowns.
Amendola is sure-handed, consistently creates separation and understands how to read defenses.
He's five years younger than Boldin. If the Ravens can somehow fit him into their budget, he would be a nice fit for this offense and provide an asset to quarterback Joe Flacco.
The safe bet is Amendola winds up elsewhere, but he's a player that's firmly on the Ravens' radar that they'll monitor the market for as the free agency signing period approaches Tuesday afternoon.