Bills Hire Odell Beckham Jr.’s Mentor as New WR Coach: Report

Odell Beckham Jr.

Getty The Bills hire Adam Henry, a longtime mentor of free agent wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr., as their new wide receivers coach.

The Buffalo Bills are wasting no time in shaking up their coaching staff for the 2023 NFL season. After replacing longtime safeties coach Jim Salgado with Joe Danna, and adding Al Holcomb as their new senior defensive assistant, the team hired Adam Henry to be their new wide receivers coach, as first reported by NFL Network‘s Tom Pelissero.

Henry, 50, takes over the vacant position left by Chad Hall, who signed on to become the Jacksonville Jaguars wide receivers coach after his contract expired in Buffalo this offseason. The hiring of Henry caused a major stir not just because “he’s a very good coach,” as NFL Insider Ian Rapoport noted, but because of his relationship with free agent wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr.

Henry was the passing game coordinator and wide receivers coach at LSU during Beckham’s tenure with the Tigers, during which the former first-round pick from the 2014 NFL Draft earned first-team All-America honors. He made both Beckham and Jarvis Landry, the latter of whom was a second-round draft pick in the 2014 NFL Draft, LSU’s first pair of receivers to break 1,000 yards in a single season.

Henry followed Beckham to the NFL and served as his wide receivers coach during his time with the New York Giants and the Cleveland Browns. While Henry has also spent time with the Raiders, Dallas Cowboys, and San Francisco 49ers, he most recently served as Indiana’s co-offensive coordinator and wide receivers coach.

Twitter Strongly Reacted to Henry’s Hire

In the back half of the 2022 NFL season, reports of OBJ possibly signing with the Bills hit a fever pitch. In addition to Von Miller’s months-long campaign to get his former Los Angeles Rams teammate in Buffalo, quarterback Josh Allen, wide receiver Stefon Diggs — they all went on the record saying they want the former Super Bowl champ in a Bills jersey.

The 30-year-old receiver made a free-agency visit to Buffalo in December, in between his meetings with the Giants and Cowboys. However, lingering questions about whether or not he was fully healed from his ACL surgery and could contribute to a team right away ultimately halted any team from signing him.

The Bills’ general manager Brandon Beane never shut down the possibility of the three-time Pro Bowler landing in Orchard Park, even after bringing back veteran receiver Cole Beasley. “We haven’t closed any doors,” Beane said of Beckham on December 14. “Signing Cole to the practice squad doesn’t mean we would rule anything out.”

Beckham to Buffalo rumors eventually died down once the playoffs neared before completely disappearing. However, after learning that Henry was joining the Bills’ coaching staff, those rumors immediately sparked back up. One fan tweeted, “Obj recruiter,” while another person wrote, “Odell you are a Bill.”

WROC-TV‘s Thad Brown tweeted, “#OBJWatch is back in WNY,” while WGR 550‘s Jeremy White noted, “If the Bills sign OBJ they still have [to] a draft a WR early.”

Ken Dorsey Spoke About Possibly Adding OBJ to the Bills’ Roster

Ken Dorsey

GettyBuffalo Bills offensive coordinator Ken Dorsey looks on during warm ups before the game against the Miami Dolphins at Hard Rock Stadium on September 25, 2022.

Henry will be working under Bills offensive coordinator Ken Dorsey, who was one of the first coaches to publicly comment on Beckham’s free agency visit in Buffalo in mid-December.

“The biggest thing is, obviously, he’s a heck of a player,” Dorsey said. “But, we feel like we’ve got a lot of great players on our team, and anytime you can create opportunities, create problems for defenses, you’re always looking at ways to do that. Different ways to attack defense, whether it’s personnel or scheme. So that would be another part of that, but at the same time, we’ve really been so happy with the guys that are here, with what they’re doing. It would just be another piece to add to an already really strong group.”

Head coach Sean McDermott said of Beckham, “I think he enjoyed his time around our building, and around a few of our players as well. We have a lot of respect for what he’s been able to accomplish at this point in his career.” McDermott, wouldn’t comment on whether Beckham asked for a multi-year deal or if he’d be able to contribute this season. “We’re just going to take it one step at a time here,” he answered.

Flash forward two months, following the Bills’ postseason collapse, it’s clear that the team needs a strong WR2 behind Diggs, and with Henry on staff, the chances of Beckham landing in Buffalo appear strong.