Odell Beckham Jr.’s Landing Spots: Chiefs, Saints, Packers all in play

What are some of the potential landing spots for Odell Beckham Jr. when the Cleveland Browns release the star wide receiver today (Nov. 5)?

After many whispers and rumors, Odell Beckham Jr. appears set to be released by the Cleveland Browns on Friday, but where are his potential landing spots as a free agent? Ian Rapoport of NFL Network reported on Friday morning that it is a matter of time until Beckham will no longer be a member of the Browns.

What are Odell Beckham Jr.’s potential landing spots?

A potential market for Beckham will be interesting to see develop. We have seen time and time again how talented Beckham is as a receiver when he is engaged and being utilized correctly. However, he comes with a big personality, and teams will need to consider that for their locker room environment.

Another element that will be interesting to see is what market emerges financially? Will Beckham look to take a small contract to potentially put himself in the shop window before hitting free agency in 2022? Or with a bumper class of free agents expected at the WR position in 2022, will Beckham look to try and leverage his ability to help a team win a Super Bowl now into a multi-year contract to get ahead of the free-agency class?

Baltimore Ravens

This is an intriguing potential landing spot for Beckham. The Ravens have three talented receivers on their roster already. However, Sammy Watkins is injury-prone, and Rashod Bateman has already had injury concerns. On top of that, we have seen the inconsistency that comes with Marquise Brown’s game.

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The other issue is with Beckham’s character. While they have opened up the offense more this season, this is predominantly a run-heavy offense that utilizes the tight ends heavily in the passing game. Bateman and Watkins have averaged just 6 targets per game this year as the third receiving option. Will that be enough for Beckham, or will the lack of a bigger role cause problems down the road?

Green Bay Packers

The Packers did not make a move at the trade deadline for any more pass-catching help, which surprised many. Perhaps the release of Beckham will drop another opportunity right into their laps.

Beckham would provide an instant upgrade to this depth chart behind Davante Adams. A combination of Adams, Randall Cobb, and Beckham would make for an enticing trio for Aaron Rodgers. Green Bay showing commitment to going out and getting Beckham for a Super Bowl run might also help convince Rodgers to stay in Green Bay this offseason.

Kansas City Chiefs

This feels like the perfect spot for Beckham. A wide-open, pass-based offense with talented players around him and the chance to make a run at a Super Bowl. Beckham could command the majority of the tertiary targets in Kansas City’s offense behind Tyreek Hill and Travis Kelce.

Having Beckham on the field would also give the Chiefs a greater opportunity to challenge opposing schemes. Right now, coordinators are happy just to put single coverage on Mecole Hardman and Byron Pringle. However, with Beckham lining up opposite Hill, defenses would surely have to think harder about what focus they put on Beckham.

New Orleans Saints

The Saints were supposedly enquiring about Beckham before the trade deadline. With Michael Thomas now set to miss the entire 2021 season, that makes a lot of sense. Beckham would be the instant WR1 in an offense that has Alvin Kamara as their leader in targets.

The Saints re-emphasized their position as potential Super Bowl contenders by defeating the Buccaneers. However, they need to upgrade their WR corps to be serious contenders. The receivers currently on New Orleans’ roster are fantastic complementary pieces, but Beckham could be the focal point going forward.

Pittsburgh Steelers

Another AFC North team is a potential landing spot for Beckham if he is released. The Steelers have lost JuJu Smith-Schuster this season and could fill the hole with Beckham. Alongside Diontae Johnson and Chase Claypool, Beckham could offer a nice contrast to the offense.

In what appears to be Ben Roethlisberger’s last hurrah, the Steelers could make a cheap addition to the offense. Beckham would be an instant upgrade on what is offered by James Washington as the third receiver. He would also make defensive coordinators think long and hard about who to focus on in this offense.

Beckham’s contract situation is intriguing

Part of Rapoport’s report on Beckham regarded his contract. The expectation is that the Browns will reduce Beckham’s base salary to close to the veteran minimum. They would then pay the rest as a signing bonus. This would make his contract friendlier for another team to claim on waivers.

Currently, the Browns would be on the hook for paying over $8 million for Beckham across the rest of the season. By changing his contract, they could potentially save themselves between $0.5-1 million depending on how much they reduce the salary.

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