Should the New York Giants, Odell Beckham, Jr. Reunite?

Giants Odell Beckham

The New York Giants are off to a 2-0 start, their best since 2016 – a modest accomplishment but a pleasantly surprising one for a team that has struggled to remain relevant after Halloween in recent seasons. Despite being undefeated, their offense appears to be closer to stagnant than “work in progress.” When rumors began circulating that first-year Head Coach Brian Daboll has been FaceTiming with free agent wide receivers, speculation immediately turned towards a reunion with a former Pro-Bowl receiver who made his name with the Giants: Odell Beckham Junior.

NFL rumors spread faster than a breakaway Chris Johnson run. Then add in the New York City media market, and it can be near impossible to gauge the seriousness of any given rumor. But where there’s smoke, there’s fire: The Giants need a wide receiver. Beckham needs a team.

Should the New York Giants, Odell Beckham, Jr. Reunite?

Is Beckham a Fit?

On the surface, one could argue that any capable athlete that can catch a ten-yard pass is a fit for the Giants. 2019’s leading receiver, Darius Slayton, has taken four offensive snaps in two games. Second-round pick Wan’Dale Robinson took nine before leaving the opener with a knee injury. Last year’s first-round pick, Kadarius Toney, has seen 35 snaps, and Kenny Golladay – and his $72 Million contract – has only seen 48. The Giants offense has snapped the ball 133 times in two games.

The only wideouts to be on the field for more than half the snaps this season are the longest-tenured Giant, Sterling Shepard, three-time practice squad assignee David Sills V, and 2018 seventh-round pick Richie James, Jr.

Memories linger from Beckham’s mercurial Giants tenure. Fans and ownership alike remember him openly questioning the ability of franchise icon Eli Manning. The pre-playoff “Boat Trip” still lives in infamy.

At the time he was traded to the Cleveland Browns, there were concerns that Beckham would have been detrimental to whoever the team brought in to replace Manning. But incumbent starter Daniel Jones is in the final year of his contract, so there can no longer be worries about stunting his development or confidence. Quite the contrary. The Giants would be better served by providing Jones with every possible weapon before deciding if he’s worth a Franchise Tag or contract extension.

Do the Giants Have the Cap Space?

According to, New York presently has just over $5.4 million in available cap space. Theoretically, that could increase by $965,000 by releasing Slayton (with no dead money incurred). Would $6.5 Million – or thereabouts – be enough to bring Beckham in?

Fans may be instantly dismissive based on the fact that the last contract he signed with the Giants established a new mark for wide receivers. But that contract is over. Beckham has earned over $80 Million in his NFL career, and last year signed on with the eventual-Super Bowl Champion Los Angeles Rams for a mere $1.25 Million.

Conventional wisdom is that when he’s healthy – he’s still recovering from the torn ACL he suffered in Super Bowl – Beckham will once again be looking for a one-year deal to ride out the 2022 season before taking another stab at unrestricted free agency.

Theoretically, the Giants – or any other team – can get creative by signing the receiver to a long-term contract, minimizing the cap number to a number they can afford for 2022, but first-year General Manager Joe Schoen has gone through painstaking efforts to keep the Giants’s future cap ledgers clean. It would be highly unlikely the team would pursue such a move for a veteran coming off a serious injury.

Why Would Beckham Choose the Giants?

This is arguably the biggest question of them all. Setting aside OBJ’s history at MetLife Stadium, would he want to play on a team that’s still favored to miss the playoffs, despite the 2-0 start?

The Denver Broncos, Philadelphia Eagles, Las Vegas Raiders, Green Bay Packers, Rams, Miami Dolphins, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and Baltimore Ravens all have not only more available cap space, but the need for at least one upgrade at wide receiver.

Yet Beckham seemed to truly enjoy his first go around in New York, despite the antics and the bandwidth he consumed. While he was always an attention magnet – beginning with “The One Handed Catch” – it wasn’t until the team took a dramatic turn towards the bottom of the NFC that he was viewed as a pariah or a distraction.

Beckham marches to the beat of his own drum. Jones is not Russell Wilson, Aaron Rodgers, Lamar Jackson, or Tom Brady.

That might not matter if he’s as interested in a reunion with Big Blue. Wide receiver is a desperate need for the Giants; Odell Beckham Junior needs a job.