Giants Ruled Out of Signing Pro Bowl Wide Receiver: Report

Odell Beckham Jr. and DeAndre Hopkins

Getty The New York Giants have been ruled out of signing a big-name, Pro-Bowl wide receiver this offseason.

The New York Giants won’t sign Odell Beckham Jr in free agency. Nor will Big Blue trade for five-time Pro Bowl wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins.

That’s according to ESPN’s Jordan Raanan, who made the bold statement via Twitter on Thursday, March 22: “Don’t listen to anyone telling you they’re trading for DeAndre Hopkins or signing OBJ at this point.”

Significantly, Raanan made the claim while including an update from NFL Media’s Andrew Groover about the Giants having met with Jaxon Smith-Njigba before Ohio State’s pro day. Smith-Njigba, one of the top wide receivers in the 2023 NFL draft class, spoke with reporters about interest from the Giants after completing his pro day workout.

The 21-year-old admitted he “would love to be, you know, in the Big Apple, in New York. It would be a blessing. A dream come true,” per Matt Goldman of Big Ten Plus:

Smith-Njigba sees the Giants as a team on the rise after last season’s surprising playoff berth. General manager Joe Schoen and head coach Brian Daboll know adding a marquee wide receiver will be crucial to ensuring 2022’s quick turnaround was no fluke, but their plans apparently won’t involve a veteran like Hopkins.

He’s been available for trade this offseason, but so far the Arizona Cardinals haven’t managed to move the three-time All-Pro on, despite links to multiple teams, including the Giants.

Giants Not Lacking Reasons to Reject DeAndre Hopkins

The Giants have more than one reason to turn away from Hopkins, despite Sportsnaut’s Benjamin Allbright naming Big Blue among four potential suitors.

For one thing, the 30-year-old has been far from durable in recent years. completing a full season just twice during the last six campaigns, amid hamstring issues, a torn MCL and a six-game suspension for violating the league’s PED policy.

There are no shortage of injury issues among the Giants’ current pass-catchers. Sterling Shepard and Wan’Dale Robinson are both recovering from torn ACLs, while newly acquired tight end Darren Waller played just 20 games the last two seasons for the Las Vegas Raiders due to ankle and hamstring problems.

Adding Hopkins to the mix would be a risk the Giants shouldn’t indulge. Especially when the cost could also prove prohibitive.

Raanan’s colleague Bill Barnwell noted how the “the two-year, $54.5 million deal Hopkins signed with the Cardinals is just about to technically start.” A trade partner would have the option of restructuring the contract, something NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport called “likely” when he reported trade “talks are ramping up.”

The Giants should avoid those talks and the prospect of giving up too much in exchange to the Cardinals, with Barnwell also pointing out how the NFC West outfit hoped “to recoup something more than the second-round pick they sent the Texans as part of the lopsided deal for Hopkins in 2020.”

With needs at receiver, along the interior of the offensive, at cornerback and linebacker, the Giants would be wise to keep their prime draft picks. Similarly, Schoen would also be smart to avoid a bidding war for Beckham.

Avoiding OBJ Is Giants’ Best Option

A reunion with Beckham might appeal to many at MetLife Stadium, including friends and former teammates Sterling Shepard and Saquon Barkley. Yet, cost is an issue the Giants can’t ignore. Not when Schoen has a mere $4,190,051 to work with under the salary cap, per

The figure puts the Giants out of the price bracket for the player they originally drafted 12th overall back in 2014. Beckham is said to want $20 million per year, according to Pro Football Talk’s Mike Florio, although the player himself subsequently refuted this report via Twitter:

If “4 AINT enough” the Giants are fresh out of luck. Fortunately, the draft has all the options Schoen and Daboll need to bolster the depth chart at wideout, including Smith-Njigba and USC standout Jordan Addison, who told Heavy’s Lorenzo Reyna he’s already spoken with the Giants.

Daboll and Schoen meeting with Smith-Njigba looks like a strong initial step toward the Giants going the rookie route to get better at a key position.