The San Francisco 49ers may be looking to make upgrades as they defend their NFC Championship, but we can probably rule out one well-known name.
In a mailbag article this week, Jay Glazer of The Athletic received a question about San Francisco’s potential interest in Cleveland Browns receiver Odell Beckham Jr, whom they were linked to in trade rumors when he was still in New York. Glazer replied that there was “no truth” to any current rumors linking the Niners and OBJ, adding that the team is trying to rebuild draft capital, not give it up.
During their Super Bowl run last year, the Niners were led in receiving by George Kittle, a tight end. They also saw one of their top wideouts leave in free agency this offseason when Emmanuel Sanders signed with New Orleans.
That said though, the Browns have given strong indications lately that they do not intend to trade Beckham, so the three-time Pro Bowler would probably come at much higher of a price than San Francisco is willing to pay.
- Odell Beckham
The trade speculation surrounding Odell Beckham Jr is probably never going to be fully put to rest, but signs continue to point to the star receiver remaining with the Cleveland Browns in 2020.
The Browns will be unveiling a new uniform design next month, and Ian Rapoport of NFL Media has learned that Beckham will be heavily featured in the promotions of the re-branding. If Cleveland was actively shopping Beckham or anticipating a trade, things like that probably would not be happening.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) March 3, 2020
Rapoport also mentioned that Beckham is expected to be healthy this offseason and more involved in the Browns’ offseason program, so all indications are that he will have a significant role in Kevin Stefanski’s offense.
Beckham has already expressed a positive opinion of Stefanski. While the Pro Bowler said all the right things last season, it would not be a surprise if he was frustrated with former head coach Freddie Kitchens like so many of his teammates.
We have heard of at least one contending team that could pursue Beckham this offseason, but the Browns gave up a first-round pick and then some for the 27-year-old a year ago. There’s no reason for them to give up on Beckham after one season, especially with a new head coach in place.
The New England Patriots are in desperate need of offensive playmakers heading into 2020, and they may need to get aggressive in pursuing one in order to convince Tom Brady to return. If the Pats look to make a trade for a star wide receiver, Odell Beckham Jr. could be a name to watch.
Greg A. Bedard of Boston Sports Journal recently published what he called a “realistic” projection of the Patriots’ 53-man roster for 2020, and he included Beckham. The rationale behind the prediction is that the Browns are “much more likely” to trade Beckham now that they are focusing on a more analytics-based approach, and Bedard believes Brady and Bill Belichick could get the most out of OBJ the way they did when the Patriots acquired Randy Moss in a blockbuster trade back in 2007.
The Patriots would likely be interested if the Browns made Beckham available via trade. However, Cleveland would almost certainly ask for a first-round pick in return, and it’s unclear if Belichick would be willing to part with the No. 23 overall pick and pay Beckham $14 million per year.
The Patriots were reportedly aggressive in trying to acquire Beckham via trade when the New York Giants first made him available. However, that was before OBJ signed his massive contract extension, so things may not be the same now.
A lot has been made about Brady wanting a big financial commitment from the Patriots, but he really wants them to improve the roster around him. He would probably be willing to take less than market value once again if he had a chance to play with a Pro Bowler like Beckham, with whom he has always been friendly.
Odell Beckham Jr was only a member of the Cleveland Browns for a few months before we started hearing rumblings that he could be traded, and it still would not be a shock if the team moved him this offseason. However, all signs point to OBJ and fellow star receiver Jarvis Landry remaining right where they are.
Beckham and Landry both had some issues with former Browns head coach Freddie Kitchens, but Jay Glazer of The Athletic wrote in his most recent mailbag that he believes new head coach Kevin Stefanski wants to keep both receivers.
“I think Kevin Stefanski is going to want them both — as a young, offensive-minded head coach, you want offensive weapons like this. … They have to show they are on board with everything when it comes to the team Stefanski is building,” Glazer said. “If they don’t, then it doesn’t really make sense. I don’t know what the market is going to be like but I think both are going to try to be on board.”
Glazer was the first to report that the Giants wanted to trade Odell Beckham Jr following the 2018 season, so any information he has about OBJ is noteworthy.
Beckham recently underwent surgery to repair a sports hernia that he dealt with throughout all of 2019. He says he is feeling “more motivated” than ever after his disappointing first season in Cleveland, and he recently expressed optimism about the direction of the team under Stefanski. The Browns reportedly want Beckham to show more commitment during the offseason this year, which will be something worth monitoring.
Both Beckham and Landry eclipsed the 1,000-yard receiving mark last season, which is impressive considering how badly things went for the Browns. Landry has made it clear that any issues he had were with Kitchens, so there’s no reason to think he will want to be traded.
On paper, Cleveland has as talented of an offense as any team in the NFL. It will be up to Stefanski to get the most out of Baker Mayfield and a star-studded roster.
There is optimism in the Cleveland Browns camp again under new head coach Kevin Stefanski, and that includes wide receiver Odell Beckham.
After a difficult and injury-plagued first season in Cleveland, Beckham has undergone surgery to repair a sports hernia and expects to be ready for 2020. He’s also optimistic, and referenced Stefanski’s work with Adam Thielen in Minnesota as reason for excitement.
“Just seeing what he did with the Minnesota Vikings for a long time with Thielen and Diggs,” Beckham told Zach Frydenlund of Complex. “These are people who I’ve watched closely on their film, and just seeing the things that he did and meeting him and seeing where his mind’s at for Jarvis (Landry) and myself of how this will all work out, I have a good feeling about it, you know?”
Beckham added that he is “more motivated” than ever before after his injury-hit first year in Cleveland.
“I think myself as well had a slice of humble pie this year, because I was hurt all year,” Beckham said. “I couldn’t really say I was hurt. I didn’t want to make it seem like I’m having an excuse, but I really couldn’t do what I wanted. I just couldn’t move the way that I wanted to, so I think that’s why I’m more motivated now than ever.”
A motivated Beckham should be good news for the Browns. He’ll be back there next year, though the organization is looking for more leadership on his part. If they get both motivation and leadership, it could be a big year for both Beckham and the Browns in 2020.
Will Odell Beckham be back with the Cleveland Browns in 2020? It looks like it, but the organization reportedly wants to see a bit more from him during the offseason.
NFL Media’s Ian Rapoport gave an update on Beckham’s status Friday. For now, the Browns have every intention of keeping Beckham for at least a year, but they want to see a greater level of commitment from him. That includes an expanded presence at OTAs and offseason workouts so Beckham can actively learn the team’s new offense and set a good example for younger players.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) January 31, 2020
While there were rumors that Beckham wanted out during the season, he has publicly denied them. The star wide receiver underwent surgery to correct a nagging sports hernia, but it does not sound like that will preclude him from participating in the team’s offseason programs like they clearly expect him to.
Beckham is under contract through 2023.
Odell Beckham Jr played the entire 2019 season while dealing with a core muscle injury, and the star wide receiver underwent surgery recently to address the issue.
The Cleveland Browns announced on Tuesday that Beckham had successful surgery to repair a core muscle injury, which is often referred to as a sports hernia. The team said Beckham is expected to make a full recovery. While no timeline for a return to football activity was given, there has been no indication that Beckham is in danger of missing training camp or the offseason program.
While he still managed to put up 1,035 receiving yards, Beckham’s first season with the Browns was a disappointment. He scored just four touchdowns and did not display consistent chemistry with Baker Mayfield, which is something the Browns will focus on improving this offseason — assuming they are not planning to trade Beckham.
Mayfield created some issues for the Browns during the season when he took aim at the team’s medical staff over the way Beckham’s injury was handled, but OBJ has not said anything publicly about being dissatisfied.