The San Francisco 49ers were reportedly very close to pulling off the biggest trade of the offseason, but were outbid by the Cleveland Browns at the last minute and defeated in their bid to land Odell Beckham Jr.
As NJ.com reported, the New York Giants shopped the Pro Bowl wide receiver around this offseason before ultimately shipping him off to Cleveland. The report noted that the Giants were quietly listening to trade offers dating all the way back to last year’s NFL Annual Meeting in Orlando, with Giants general manager Dave Gettleman talking to the Los Angeles Rams about a potential deal.
But it was ultimately the aggressiveness from the Browns that finally brought the trade to fruition, Cleveland.com‘s Mary Kay Cabot reported. Cabot noted that Browns general manager John Dorsey made a call to Gettleman as soon as the day legal tampering opened, asking if Odell Beckham Jr. was still on the trade block. Negotiations started here, and were “fast and furious” until the two teams finally reached a deal, Cabot reported.
The Browns won out mostly because Dorsey had done his homework and knew exactly what it would take to land Beckham — and he was willing to pay the Giants’ asking price, whereas the 49ers were not willing to part with their top draft pick.
“Dorsey had before him five different trade scenarios that the Browns had been working on since December, thanks to all their intel, and the report and rumors,” she wrote.
“All five scenarios included the Browns’ No. 17 overall pick, and a variety of combinations. The names of Duke Johnson and Ogbah never came up, a source said. Meanwhile, the 49ers were also interested, according to Glazer, but the Giants wanted the No. 2 overall pick and the 49ers weren’t budging.”
The trade will allow Odell Beckham Jr. to join a quickly rising Cleveland Browns team, led by quarterback Baker Mayfield and a rapidly improved defense. The Browns are now considered by many to be the favorite to win the AFC North, taking advantage of the disarray with the Pittsburgh Steelers and two teams with uncertain futures in the Baltimore Ravens and Cincinnati Bengals.
As the Sacramento Bee noted, the San Francisco 49ers have been active this offseason addressing the team’s pressing needs, but not making any splashy trades or signings. The report noted that the team is likely to remain busy up until the NFL Draft in May.