Just like Earl Thomas, Jamal Adams, Lincoln Riley and many other things, this is going to be a story until it is not. Get ready for Odell Beckham Jr. watch as it relates to the Dallas Cowboys.
Obviously the Cowboys were connected to OBJ over the second half of last season, and while he wound up not signing with anyone, the brain-trust in charge of Dallas made sure to let the world know at the Senior Bowl this year that they plan on re-visiting talks with the wide receiver this offseason.
The Senior Bowl comments were ‘only’ 20 days ago, but free agency is coming soon when players will be finding new teams left and right. The Cowboys have an even larger need at the wide receiver position than they did when they were first talking to OBJ around Thanksgiving, given how their playoff performance unfolded with no one able to perform in that department outside of CeeDee Lamb.
Round and round we go.
ESPN listed the Dallas Cowboys as the top fit for wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr.
As noted the Cowboys are going to be connected to Beckham until he is on a non-Dallas team, but ESPN dove headfirst into the pool on Tuesday as they connected 50 players to their best possible homes, some new and some current.
It should come as no surprise that the worldwide leader picked the Dallas Cowboys as the best fit for Odell Beckham Jr., and while it is certainly low-hanging fruit, it does make sense.
26. Odell Beckham Jr., WR
Best team fit: Dallas Cowboys
Both the Chiefs and the Bills are also potential landing spots for Beckham, but we know there is interest from Dallas, which has a real need to add a proven No. 2 target opposite of CeeDee Lamb. Beckham missed the entire 2022 season after suffering a knee injury during the Rams’ Super Bowl LVI win. If the knee checks out, Beckham can still create immediate separation as a detailed and efficient route runner. In 12 games with the Rams in 2021 (including the playoffs), Beckham caught 48 passes for 593 yards and seven touchdown receptions. He would upgrade the Dallas passing game for Dak Prescott.
The general consensus among Cowboys fans is that the team needs to find a way to be more aggressive in terms roster construction over the offseason. Signing a free agent hardly qualifies as an aggressive move, but landing someone who could be a bonafide difference-maker certainly does.
While there is a lot of potential with Beckham Jr. and the Cowboys, it is also possible that it could not work out. There was quite a run of attention over the holiday season when he just visited the team to discuss things, one can only imagine how intense things would get if he were actually on the team. Obviously it is all worth it if he helps them on offense and provides a verifiable threat opposite of CeeDee Lamb which the team sorely needs, although Michael Gallup in his second year post-injury is still worth mentioning.
Like most things in free agency this will likely come down to money. The Cowboys clearly did not feel comfortable with Beckham’s situation a few months ago and the fact that he did not play at all this past season suggests that they were right not to pay up. Wide receiver is one of the team’s top positions of need over the offseason, so signing Beckham would help allow them to go in other directions in the 2023 NFL draft. There are legitimate pros to the idea.
For what it’s worth, ESPN included two current Cowboys who are pending free agents and came up with their ideal fits, they have Dalton Schultz following Kellen Moore to the Los Angeles Chargers and Tony Pollard sticking around.
12. Dalton Schultz, TE
Best team fit: Los Angeles Chargers
Some roster cuts are anticipated in L.A., which will help the team out with the cap — and maybe open the door for Schultz to play for Kellen Moore, his former offensive coordinator in Dallas. In Moore’s system, Schultz could be used as a seam stretcher for quarterback Justin Herbert, with catch-and-run opportunities on play-action and boot. His regular-season production in 2022 was slowed by a knee injury, but the tight end logged 12 receptions for 122 yards and three touchdowns in the Cowboys’ two playoff games.
19. Tony Pollard, RB
Best team fit: Dallas Cowboys
The Cowboys could release Ezekiel Elliott, and Pollard — who fractured his left fibula in the playoff loss to San Francisco — would then be in line to return to Dallas on the franchise tag as the lead back in Mike McCarthy’s system. While splitting touches with Elliott in 2022, Pollard rushed for 1,007 yards and averaged 9.5 yards per catch on 39 receptions. He has explosive dual-threat upside, with the formation flexibility in the pass game to play a featured role in the Cowboys’ offense next season.
Tony Pollard is a candidate to receive the franchise tag from the Dallas Cowboys and beginning today the team has 15 days to consider whether or not they want to do it. Schultz is another option and if the team does tag him it would be the third time in a row that the Cowboys tagged the same player in consecutive offseasons.
There are a lot of decisions facing the Dallas Cowboys this offseason, time will tell whether or not Odell Beckham Jr. factors into any of them.