NFL rumors: Patriots interested in Odell Beckham Jr., JuJu Smith-Schuster
Report: Patriots interested in OBJ, JuJu Smith-Schuster in free agency originally appeared on NBC Sports Boston
The New England Patriots need wide receiver help, and they are interested in two of the top players at the position left on the NFL free agent market.
Those wideouts are Odell Beckham Jr. and JuJu Smith-Schuster. NFL Network's Mike Giardi and The Boston Herald's Andrew Callahan reported the latest updates on these veteran wide receivers Wednesday afternoon.
Hearing the #Patriots have serious interest in JuJu Smith-Schuster, the best free-agent WR available.
He caught 78 passes for 933 yards and three touchdowns last year in a rebound season with Kansas City.
— Andrew Callahan (@_AndrewCallahan) March 15, 2023
The Patriots went into free agency with a lack of high-end talent and depth at wide receiver, and then they lost Jakobi Meyers -- who led all New England wideouts in receptions, yards and touchdowns in 2022 -- to the Las Vegas Raiders.
Beckham has been an electrifying player in his career, but he missed all of last season because of a torn ACL suffered in Super Bowl LVI with the Los Angeles Rams. He is 31 years old and hasn't posted a 1,000-yard season since 2019. If healthy, Beckham could still be productive, but he reportedly is seeking $20 million per year in his next contract. That would be an insane price to pay for him. Beckham held a private workout in Arizona last week, and the Patriots reportedly were among the teams in attendance.
Curran: Jakobi Meyers' exit highlights Patriots' value disconnect
Smith-Schuster spent the first five years of his career with the Pittsburgh Steelers before joining the Kansas Chiefs for the 2022 campaign. He tallied 78 receptions for 933 yards and three touchdowns in an offense led by MVP quarterback Patrick Mahomes. The Chiefs won Super Bowl LVII over the Philadelphia Eagles in February.
The Patriots have not been very busy in free agency thus far. Their only external addition has been Denver Broncos offensive tackle Calvin Anderson. All contracts can become official beginning at 4 p.m. ET Wednesday when the new league year begins.