The Broncos should sign Odell Beckham Jr. to replace Tim Patrick
This past week, Tim Patrick was lost for the 2022 season after tearing his ACL. The Broncos still have a talented wide receiving group with Courtland Sutton, Jerry Jeudy and K.J. Hamler, but losing Patrick hurts this team. With the playoffs and Super Bowl as the expectation, the Broncos should sign Odell Beckham Jr.
While talented, there are question marks surrounding the trio of Sutton, Jeudy and Hamler. Jeudy and Hamler both missed large stretches of 2021 with injuries and Sutton spent the season re-acclimating himself after he missed the majority of 2020 with a torn ACL. Expecting these three will all stay healthy for the entirety of 2022 might be wishful thinking.
Beckham does have injury concerns himself, as he is recovering from a torn ACL. He likely won’t be ready until midseason, so hesitation to sign him is understood. However, the best three wide receivers on the Broncos active roster have had injury concerns, so adding one more shouldn’t make a difference.
Stylistically, Beckham is different from Patrick. Replacing Patrick’s size, reliability and talent is not possible at this point, so the Broncos should move towards the best available option, versus trying to find a junior varsity version of Tim Patrick.
We’ve seen Sutton succeed at a high level, but with Jeudy and Hamler, it’s only been flashes. Those flashes have been eye popping, and there’s reason to believe they’ll improve with Russell Wilson at quarterback, but their consistency is a question mark.
Beckham would be a player opposing defenses have to account for when he’s on the field because he’s dangerous on every play.
Last season, Beckham was released by the Browns and signed with the Rams. He was vital to L.A.’s Super Bowl run, especially after they lost Robert Woods for the season. The 2021 Rams proved playing the “let’s see what we got” philosophy is fine but going out and getting known commodities is a much better move for a team with Super Bowl aspirations.
Broncos head coach Nathaniel Hackett said on the team’s website in regards to replacing Patrick, “It’ll be exciting to see who is going to step up. Somebody’s going to have to.”
Interesting. Hackett is acknowledging with “somebody’s going to have to” that they need to replace Patrick’s production.
The bigger issue is, what if nobody steps up? The Broncos can’t just make somebody suddenly become more effective if the player doesn’t have the talent. Shrugging your shoulders and hoping somebody steps up isn’t the way to go. If the talent isn’t there, then it isn’t there.
Right now, the Broncos are fortunate they have options to fix this issue rather than wait until the season starts and nobody is available to sign.
The Rams have remained contenders by bringing in players like Von Miller, Matthew Stafford, Jalen Ramsey and now Bobby Wagner.
We’ve recently seen the Buccaneers sign Julio Jones. Jones isn’t expected to be what he once was, but he can be an effective fourth option for Tom Brady.
The Rams and the Buccaneers are the two most-recent Super Bowl champions. Both teams brought in a veteran quarterback and surrounded that quarterback with established veterans rather than rely on players to “step up.”
Maybe I’m wrong, and the Broncos have a Brandon Marshall or Tim Patrick type player that will emerge. That would be ideal. It’s concerning that they don’t readily know who that player might be. The fact that coach Hackett referred to that person as “somebody” rather than provide a name should worry Broncos Country.
If the Broncos don’t replace Patrick with a veteran, they will still be competitive this season, but the AFC is stacked. Beckham would give the Broncos a playmaker as they head into the second half of the season and playoffs.
Odell Beckham proved last season that when paired with a franchise quarterback, he can be contribute heavily. The philosophy worked in Tampa Bay and Los Angeles, and it could work in Denver.