Signing drama Odell Beckham tried to create ended up being a dud

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Is anyone perched anxiously on the edge of their seat, waiting with bated breath to see where Odell Beckham Jr. is going to end up?

Other than, of course, Odell Beckham Jr.?

The talented, lightning-rod receiver has conducted his own personal free-agent tour in the past 10 or so days, visiting three teams that have much more important issues on their respective plates — like making the playoffs and chasing a Super Bowl title.

This Beckham tour — a visit with the Giants, his former team; the Cowboys, who’ve been most vocal about their desire to have him; and the Bills — has been a curious practice in that it’s totally Beckham-driven, not team-driven.

Beckham suffered a torn ACL in his left knee injury in the Super Bowl last season while playing with the Rams and is apparently at least close to ready to play again. In an effort to get signed this season, he created his own market. And he’s acted as his own publicist and agent, announcing to whomever will listen that he’s ready to sign and wants this next stop to be his last.

After having visited the Bills earlier this week, the third among his teams of choice for a visit, Beckham announced he’s headed home to Arizona to consult with family and make a decision on where he plans to take his talents next.

NFL
Odell Beckham
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Beckham informed us of this, though no one really asked him and we’re not even sure any of the three teams truly is interested.

The backdrop to all of this is the fact no one even knows if Beckham is healthy enough to play, or when he will be, because he declined to work out.

So, are we talking about a player who can help a team for the final few games of this season or someone who won’t be of any help until 2023?

No team in the league is as short on receiver talent than the Giants, who are 7-4-1 and straining to remain in the wild-card hunt with five more regular-season games on the schedule.

But, should the Giants want to re-sign him, is Beckham well enough to help them get into the playoffs? Likely not.

It’s been my theory and belief all along that the Giants acquiesced to a visit with Beckham as a courtesy to their former player, in some ways window dressing to show the friends Beckham has in the locker room, Saquon Barkley and Sterling Shepard, that they’re open to him rejoining the team.

But the signing of Beckham doesn’t fit with what general manager Joe Schoen and head coach Brian Daboll are trying to do with this team, which is build it with youth and lessen the salary-cap strain.

In the case of the Cowboys or Bills, both of whom are virtual locks to get into the playoffs, could Beckham help them in the postseason?

These are questions that these teams apparently don’t have answers to, because of Beckham’s refusal to work out for them.

Rams
Odell Beckham
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Another potential pitfall is the attention Beckham brings wherever he goes, like baggage. Among the three teams Beckham visited, the Cowboys are the one that doesn’t seem to have an issue with the added drama, because that’s how their owner Jerry Jones likes it.

But even some on the Cowboys have expressed reservations, most notably defensive end DeMarcus Lawrence — who, when asked if “it’s fair to say” he wants Beckham as a new teammate, answered: “It’s fair to say I’m trying to reach a Super Bowl. So, if he can come in and help us with that, then yes, I’ll accept him. But if we’re just gonna do the circus, no I don’t.

“I’m focused on this year, this team, what we have in this locker room and the journey we’re on.”

It was the perfect answer on so many levels.

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