Claiming Odell Beckham Jr. doesn’t make sense for Detroit Lions

The Detroit Lions are a top priority on the NFL waiver, but there is little reason to believe they will use that position to advance their receiving corps if Odell Beckham Jr. makes waivers later today.

Beckham, the talented but whimsy soon-to-be ex-receiver of the Cleveland Browns, wisely agreed to a restructured contract that should allow him to pick his next target and make him a less attractive addition to co-run teams, even those than Receiver. needy like lions.

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The Browns reportedly converted a significant portion of Beckham’s remaining base salary of $ 7.25 million into a roster bonus due later that week, and canceled the last two years of his deal. In return, Beckham agreed not to ask for a severance payment for the money he missed should he not be drawn upon in waivers.

While the base salary conversion in and of itself isn’t enough to deter interested parties – for a team that wants Beckham to claim a waiver, the final price is the same $ 7.25 million – the fact that Beckham is now on a three-month rental should be is, the pool of teams (which may already have been zero) willing to pay so much for their services.

The Lions, 0-8 and the only team without a win in the NFL, are in dire need of help from the recipient. They have the worst reception corps in the league, no semblance of deep passing, and no stars on their list. Beckham could help in all three areas.

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But ignoring their own salary cap for a moment and adding an often injured and seemingly relegated recipient who has made it clear he wants to play for a contender for the rest of the season makes no sense as there is little profit along the way gives .

If it is claimed, Beckham will be a free agent in March no matter how he plays between now and the new year. The Lions won’t win anything – maybe literally – until then. And Beckham didn’t tear up the last two years of his deal so as not to test the market.

It’s more likely that Beckham will delete waivers and sign with a competing team like the Seattle Seahawks, New Orleans Saints, or Green Bay Packers, and even then, might not add much value.

Cleveland Browns wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. (13) rushes for yards after a reception during the first half of an NFL soccer game at FirstEnergy Stadium, Thursday, September 17, 2020, in Cleveland, Ohio. [Jeff Lange/Beacon Journal]

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Once one of the NFL’s most exciting players, Beckham has been a disappointment since joining the Browns in a spectacular 2019 trade that was briefly discussed in the NFL. He had a good first season in Cleveland, catching 74 passes for 1,035 yards, but has only played 13 games and has received less than 600 yards since.

The Lions have an interesting connection with Beckham that is at least noteworthy in this discussion: John Dorsey, front office manager, has planned Beckham’s trade to Cleveland as Brown’s GM in 2019.

But more notably, the Lions have a little over $ 3 million in cap space, according to, which is not even half what they would have to take Beckham for waivers.

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Surely the Lions could create more leeway if they really wanted to get Beckham into town. But they haven’t moved a cap so far, and GM Brad Holmes is too smart to dive into the space of future years to lease a high-mileage sports car when newer, better versions become available next spring.

The Lions had a chance to add Beckham years ago when they overtook him to win Eric Ebron with the 10th pick of the 2014 draft.

Some may see this as an opportunity to atone for this mistake. But rather than risking another, it is better for the Lions to pass Beckham and play their current hand, as unsightly as they are, to the recipient.

Contact Dave Birkett at [email protected] Follow him on Twitter @davebirkett.

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