Free agency is still ongoing, but most of the top players have already signed. But there’s a wild card out there right now for teams with cash to burn and a need at the receiver position. His name is Odell Beckham Jr.
The New York Giants aren’t exactly happy with the way things have unfolded this offseason with Beckham, whose off-field issues continue to crop up. Co-owner John Mara recently had some telling things to say about all that, and he hinted the receiver isn’t immune to being traded.
The big obstacles to any trade would be that Beckham has an extremely high value of himself and is looking for an absurd long-term deal, and the Giants would need a heck of a lot in return. Any team with a legitimate chance to make a deal has to be able to meet those qualifications.
So, which teams should be pushing hard to make a bold move for Odell Beckham Jr.? We have some ideas about that.
We already know that Jarvis Landry would absolutely love to reunite with his old LSU running mate. He has been pushing hard to recruit OBJ to Cleveland. And quite frankly, the Browns have the pieces to make a deal work.
They have the No. 1 and No. 4 overall picks of the draft and have six of the top 65 overall picks this year. That’s a ton of capital. And while Cleveland surely will use the top pick to draft a quarterback (reportedly between Josh Allen and Sam Darnold), the rest of the draft should be wide open for general manager John Dorsey.
Furthermore, it’s been reported that Corey Coleman could be an odd-man out this offseason. Perhaps the Browns could dangle him, along with draft picks, to get Beckham to Cleveland. And once he’s there, we all know they have more than enough money to make him a very rich young man.
Tennessee has struggled to provide Marcus Mariota with reliable weapons in the passing game. This past year, he really struggled, throwing more interceptions than touchdowns.
Corey Davis has some promise, and Rishard Matthews has big-play potential. But the Titans don’t have anyone of Beckham’s caliber on the roster right now, and they’re not going to find one who can contribute immediately in the draft.
The Titans don’t have a wealth of draft picks but could potentially put together a package to bring Beckham to the AFC South. Perhaps of more importance is the fact that Tennessee has over $40 million in cap space to make Beckham happy. The Titans are a playoff-caliber team, too, and they have a franchise passer in Mariota to get him the ball.
Los Angeles Rams
Well, if the reports are true the Rams are already working overtime to bring Beckham to Hollywood. In fact, they’ve even reportedly made the No. 23 overall pick available in a potential trade with New York to make it happen.
We know that the Rams are deadly serious about upgrading their roster right now. The trades to land Marcus Peters and Aqib Talib spoke volumes. As did the move to sign free agent defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh.
Adding a receiver of Beckham’s caliber to the team’s already stacked offense would vault the Rams from championship contender to NFC favorite in 2018.
New York Jets
The Jets have plenty of cap space still available even after a very active offseason (over $25 million). And they’re almost certainly about to land a rookie quarterback, who won’t cost much for the first few years of his career.
One of the team’s top receivers from last year, Robby Anderson, is embroiled in some serious legal issues that could certainly impact his NFL career. There are some other young talented receivers on the roster, but adding Beckham Jr. would instantly turn New York’s offense into a legitimate threat against any defense.
Given the way this team’s defense has been built up, a move to trade for Beckham would make the Jets playoff contenders in 2018, to be sure.
San Francisco 49ers
The 49ers have to be looking at the Rams right now with at least a smidgen of fear. While we know John Lynch and Kyle Shanahan are secure in their long-term futures, the competitive aspect of doing what they do is a factor. They have a franchise quarterback and a burgeoning young roster, and it’s likely the 49ers feel they can compete for the NFC West crown this year, not a few years from now.
With that in mind, the 49ers absolutely need to be making a push to “steal” Beckham from the Rams.
Besides, it’s not like adding the receiver would be a bad thing for San Francisco’s offense. Beckham is one of the league’s best at yards after the catch, which is a staple of Shanahan’s offense. He’d instantly become a lethal weapon for Jimmy Garoppolo, who was one of the hottest quarterbacks in the league when he played late last year.
No offense to Braxton Miller, but he hasn’t exactly panned out the way the Texans hoped he would coming out of Ohio State. Imagine an offense, led by Deshaun Watson, with Will Fuller, DeAndre Hopkins and Odell Beckham Jr. running wild.
Excuse me, I need a moment.
The Texans have that all-important young, cheap quarterback locked up. They also have an elite defense that should be dominant again if the stars can stay healthy in 2018. Throwing an elite receiver into the mix would instantly make Houston a championship contender.
The big issue here for Houston is that it has no picks until the third round of the draft. So, obviously general manager Brian Gaine would have to get creative. The Texans do have eight total picks this year, and perhaps they dangle a future first-round pick as bait.