The Odell Beckham Jr. sweepstakes heated up a bit as the big-name wide receiver spoke with the New York Jets — among others — at the NFL League Meeting.
After the week in Arizona, ESPN NFL insider Dan Graziano followed up: “Odell Beckham Jr. has offers on the table from multiple teams, and I am told the Jets are the most likely landing spot but that Beckham could be waiting to make sure the Aaron Rodgers deal gets completed before finalizing his own decision. Baltimore has made a push for Beckham as well.”
His colleague, Jeremy Fowler, added some more context to this rumor. “Beckham made the rounds at the Arizona Biltmore, saying hello to Jets general manager Joe Douglas and head coach Robert Saleh, [Los Angeles] Rams general manager Les Snead and [Cleveland] Browns head coach Kevin Stefanski. As Dan notes above, the feeling here is the Jets remain a viable contender, depending on the price point. A few people I spoke to believe Rodgers is the quarterback with whom Beckham wants to play.”
Fowler speculated that the “next step could be Beckham taking a physical for the Jets or another team” after two ACL tears.
Jets’ Target Odell Beckham Jr. Could Sign for Less Than Expected
Not too long ago, OBJ publicly denied reports that he was asking for $20 million per year. In the same breath, the wideout also confirmed that $4 million per year was not enough.
On March 30, Sports Illustrated NFL insider Albert Breer told a fan that Beckham “was looking for something in the neighborhood of $15 million per year” during a mailbag column. He added: “That’s down from where he was previously, so I do think there’s room for negotiation here, and I do think showing up at the hotel where the owners’ meetings were taking place was a savvy move from a business standpoint.”
During the ESPN piece, Fowler voiced that Beckham’s price tag could end up being even lower than that. “As one league source forecasted, perhaps Beckham earns a deal of around $8 million per year that can reach $10-plus million with incentives,” he informed. “With a very sluggish free agency market after the initial wave, that’s probably considered a win for Beckham.”
So, in the end, this high-priced former superstar might be had at a relatively low cap hit on an incentive-heavy deal — if reports are accurate. Does this mean OBJ signs on a one-year contract in 2023, rather than the long-term fit he was initially searching for?
“To me, this comes down to what Beckham wants, from money to geography to coaching to winning,” Breer concluded. “He’s not young anymore, but he doesn’t turn 31 until November. It’s not hard to see him having another nice run or two, like the one he was having with the Rams before tearing his ACL again in the Super Bowl. Which is why I think landing in the right spot is imperative and, you’d hope, high on his list of priorities.”
At this stage, the Ravens and Rams appear to be the Jets’ top competition for OBJ.
Jets GM Joe Douglas Comments on Odell Beckham Jr. Rumors
During an exclusive one-on-one interview with team reporter Eric Allen, Jets general manager Joe Douglas commented on the Beckham rumors once again.
He stated: “There’s been some initial conversations with his agent, Zeke Sandhu. Obviously, Odell is a dynamic weapon as well and brings a lot to the wide receiver room, so we’ll see how that plays out.”
At the League Meeting, head coach Robert Saleh also fielded a question on why Gang Green is targeting OBJ, replying: “He’s been a fantastic receiver in this league. Everything you hear about him, he’s a phenomenal person. Again… you’re always going to turn over every stone, cross your Ts, dot your Is, make sure you’re not missing an opportunity to add a great player.”
Saleh did note that “there’s no guarantee anything will happen” between Beckham and the Jets, but he also called ACL injuries “easily fixable” in this day and age earlier in his response.