If Odell Beckham, Jr. wants to play for the Green Bay Packers and catch footballs from Aaron Rodgers, he now has an offer on the table.
That is the word out of 1265 Lombardi Avenue on Wednesday morning. Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel beat writer Tom Silverstein has reported that the Packers extended a contract offer to Beckham for the veteran minimum salary, which for 2021 is $1.075 million over a full season.
Given the context of Beckham’s contract with the Cleveland Browns, which was just terminated when he cleared waivers on Tuesday, the Packers and other teams around the NFL have no reason to offer him more than that minimum. This is because his Browns contract has offset language in it, according to ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler. The Browns owe Beckham $4.25 million (down from $7.25 million, thanks to a deal they made with him prior to waiving him), but the amount Cleveland owes will be reduced by whatever compensation he receives from a new team over the remainder of this season.
Therefore, Beckham will get paid the same amount whether he were to sign in Green Bay for the veteran minimum or elsewhere, unless another team signs him to a contract worth more than the $4.25 million that the Browns owe. Practically speaking, unless a team is willing to pay several million dollars to employ Beckham for the remaining eight games of the season, there is no incentive for a team to offer more than the league minimum. Should he receive only league-minimum offers, that would force him to make a decision purely based on non-monetary factors.
Given Beckham’s previous comments, that would position the Packers well. They are absolutely a top playoff contender, currently holding the #2 spot in the NFC at 7-2 with a head-to-head tiebreaker over the top-seeded, 8-1 Arizona Cardinals. Green Bay also has the reigning NFL MVP at quarterback in Aaron Rodgers, who is expected to return from the reserve/COVID-19 list in time for Sunday’s game against the Seattle Seahawks.
Assuming Beckham has other offers on the table — reporting from ESPN’s Dianna Russini earlier Wednesday suggested that he has narrowed his choices down to Kansas City, Green Bay, and New Orleans — finances should not enter into his decision. With the Packers’ offer now on the table, it is on Beckham to decide if green and gold are the right colors for him to wear over the remainder of the 2021 season.
This article was updated to clarify the amount of money the Browns owe Beckham for the remainder of the 2021 season.