Odell Beckham Jr.’s 2022 landing spot will be one of the biggest questions in the second half of the season. The number of suitors vying for his services ramped up in recent weeks, with the Dallas Cowboys, Buffalo Bills, Kansas City Chiefs and Los Angeles Rams all in contention to land the veteran receiver.
But the New York Giants, the team that drafted him 12th overall in 2014, remain a possibility as well. And one of Beckham’s old teammates, current Giants running back Saquon Barkley, would support a New York reunion.
“He knows how I feel, he knows how we feel about him,” Barkley said Friday. “He’s Odell. He’s a heck of a player. When he’s healthy, he’s one of the best players in the league. Why wouldn’t anybody want him?
Barkley celebrated Beckham’s 30th birthday with the receiver over the weekend and joked that he didn’t really need to give Beckham a sales pitch about coming back to the Giants.
“I feel like there’s not really a sales pitch. It’s New York. It’s the Giants,” Barkley added. “It would be a great story to come back to the place that he was before and continue to build success.”
Barkley only played one season with Beckham – his rookie year and Beckham’s final year in New York in 2018. Barkley won Offensive Rookie of the Year that season with 2,028 total offensive yards and 15 total touchdowns, while Beckham caught 77 passes for 1,052 yards and six touchdowns.
The Giants traded Beckham to the Cleveland Browns the following offseason along with linebacker Olivier Vernon for safety Jabrill Peppers, offensive lineman Kevin Zeitler and 2019 first- and third-round draft picks.
Cowboys’ continued pursuit of OBJ
For a while, it looked like a two-team race for Beckham between the Rams and the Bills. Beckham had just won a Super Bowl with Los Angeles and played well in Sean McVay’s offense. The Bills, meanwhile, are among a handful of Super Bowl favorites this season with a potent offense and also signed Beckham’s friend and former Rams teammate, Von Miller, this offseason.
But as the Rams’ 2022 season continued to spiral downward, the Cowboys quickly emerged as a possible team for Beckham. Cowboys legend Michael Irvin said he spoke several times with Beckham about joining Dallas, while linebacker Micah Parson tweeted his desire to play with Beckham and running back Ezekiel Elliott succinctly said “we want him. We want OBJ.” Cowboys owner Jerry Jones wasn’t subtle in his interest in signing Beckham, either. He said that Beckham in a Cowboys uniform “could look pretty good.”
Where Beckham signs remains a question mark as the second half of the NFL season rolls on. The Cowboys look like a favorite because the fanfare around him potentially landing in Dallas, but the other teams could remain squarely in the mix. Giants first-year general manager Joe Schoen mentioned the team had been in contact with Beckham but didn’t elaborate on their interest.
In terms of recruitment, though, Barkley knows he has a bit of an edge over the rest of the league.
“I don’t have to tweet at him,” Barkley said, smirkingly.