Image C/O Cleveland Browns
Ok, so what if the Patriots make a trade with the Cleveland Browns but the player they receive isn’t Odell Beckham Jr.? It’s possible that Cleveland might be willing to dispense with Jarvis Landry and this might potentially be a better pickup for New England. Yes, OBJ carries the bigger notoriety but Landry comes with the bigger stat sheet and better overall percentages year-to-year than OBJ. Here’s why Newton to Landry might possibly be better: While, OBJ is certainly a prime talent, he has only been pulling a 66.9 rating since joining the Browns. This makes him the 67th best WR in the NFL over the period. Jarvis Landry on the other hand has been the No. 1 guy in Cleveland far outperforming his fellow Tiger from Death Valley. Yes, that’s right, both Landry and Beckham Jr. were at LSU during the same time. Landry last season was good for 138 targets, 83 receptions, 1174 yards, and 6 TD’s. He also comes without all of the emotional baggage and may potentially be less of a burden on a Patriots locker room that through the first weeks of the season seem to be clicking on all cylinders.
Beckham Jr., while making a splash on the stage with the New York Giants has seen his numbers precipitously decline year over year resulting in his dispatch to Cleveland where his numbers have continued to decline even further compared to that of other “talented” WR’s in the league. The Patriots have the salary cap space to easily assume either player’s contract should this trade be solely draft picks and/or cash related. Landry is in the third-year of a five-year $75 million contract with the Browns. Beckham Jr., who won’t be an unrestricted free-agent until 2024, nets about $18 million per year.
Since it seems that the Browns are going run heavy for this season, just look at the output from Chubb and Hunt during the first two games. When looking to shake up your cap concerns, off loading contracts, from players like Landry and even OBJ, would be wise for a team that has always been concerned about its financials.
The other case for bringing in a player like Landry vs. OBJ would be the desire of the media to question the dynamics of flex that has been a clear dynamic of this new Patriots offense. Should the Patriots absorb a loss with OBJ as the wide out, the questions post game inevitably would be: Was Odell targeted enough times?
Should the Patriots absorb a loss with Landry in the wide out slot, it will simply just be a loss. Exactly what the team who has always put an “us” mentality forward continues to need.
Think we are done? Stay tuned for Part 3 where we poke the Bears about whether or not the Patriots might want to look at Allen Robinson. One way or another, the November 3rd trade deadline might see Foxboro wheeling and dealing with some of their bundle of 2nd Round picks for another set of hands on the outside lanes.