NFL Rumors: Giants May Have Shortchanged Themselves On Odell Beckham Jr. Trade By Not Checking Back With 49ers

Mitchell LeffGetty Images

Many New York Giants fans were already upset with the team for trading wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. and for the relatively light return they got for him, and a new report will likely pour some salt on their wounds.

The Giants shipped Beckham to the Cleveland Browns for a first-round pick (No. 17 overall), the second of the Browns’ third-round picks (No. 95) and safety Jabrill Peppers. But on Sunday, ESPN reported Sunday that the Giants had been heavy in talks with the San Francisco 49ers, who badly wanted Beckham and would have outbid the Browns if they had been given the chance.

But once the Browns proposed the final deal — the one that Giants general manager Dave Gettleman would accept — he never bothered to make another phone call to the 49ers. The deal was accepted, and the 49ers were left stunned that the Giants shipped off their All-Pro wide receiver for a lesser price.

San Francisco 49ers general manager John Lynch had already opened up about the failed trade talks, telling local sports station KNBR last month that the Giants wanted two No. 1 picks and the 49ers weren’t willing to part with the No. 2 overall pick. But the recent ESPN story reported that the 49ers had another offer and would have swapped first round picks with the Giants and taken their No. 6 overall pick.

The story has led to a new round of criticism for Gettleman, but others said that the 49ers offer of swapping their first-round picks still didn’t seem like enough.

The Browns may have simply also out-hustled the 49ers in landing Odell Beckham Jr.‘s Mary Kay Cabot reported that Browns general manager John Dorsey made a call to Gettleman on the first day that legal tampering was allowed, asking if Odell Beckham Jr. was on the trade block and kick-starting negotiations. The aggressiveness appeared to have paid off, as talks between the Giants and Browns were “fast and furious,” Cabot wrote.

Cabot also noted that Dorsey had done his homework and knew exactly what the Giants would want in exchange for Beckham, even running through five different trade scenarios to know exactly how to counter the Giants and meet whatever their asking price might be. So the fact that the 49ers were willing to bid higher still may not have won out, simply sent Dorsey into one of the team’s contingency plans for landing Beckham.