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Odell Beckham Jr. Clears Waivers, Seahawks Remain in Mix to Sign Him

Seattle could have ensured Beckham was coming to the Pacific Northwest by claiming him off waivers. Now, they will compete with several other interested suitors, including Green Bay and New Orleans.

With no teams putting in a claim before the 1 PM PST deadline on Tuesday, Odell Beckham Jr. has cleared waivers and the veteran receiver will officially become an unrestricted free agent for the first time in his career.

Beckham, 29, was released by the Browns on Monday, allowing the other 31 teams a chance to claim him off waivers. Any team claiming him would have been on the hook for $7.25 million for the final nine weeks of the 2021 season, a hefty price tag for a player heading towards free agency next March.

Since news broke of Beckham's impending release, the Seahawks have been linked to the star wideout as a potential suitor and a report from Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk named them as a preferred landing spot. The three-time Pro Bowler also has a prior relationship with quarterback Russell Wilson, who has reportedly urged the organization to acquire him.

With over $13 million in cap space, Seattle was one of only nine teams with enough financial flexibility to take on Beckham's contract. Sitting 11th on the waiver wire, the team was positioned well to land him if they were willing to pay that price.

Per sources with knowledge of the situation, however, Seattle's internal discussions centered around the possibility of signing Beckham after he cleared waivers. All along, this seemed to the path the front office planned to take rather than absorb his expensive contract for the remainder of the season, instead taking a chance they could find a way to sign him for less once he hit free agency.

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One factor that may have played into that decision? While Seattle has ample cap space currently, the team does have $9 million in voided money on four pending free agents in 2022 and may want to roll some of its current cap space to next year to help cover for those expenses.

Now, one day after coach Pete Carroll seemed genuinely interested in the possibility of adding Beckham to the fold, the Seahawks will have the opportunity to show how serious they are about teaming Beckham up with Wilson, Tyler Lockett, and DK Metcalf in a midseason bidding war with numerous suitors jockeying to sign him.

Earlier on Tuesday, NFL insider Jordan Schultz reported Beckham prioritized Green Bay as his top destination if he cleared waivers. Seeking the opportunity to play with a proven veteran quarterback on a championship contender, Aaron Rodgers and the Packers would check off both boxes and the team lacks talent and depth behind superstar Davonte Adams on the outside.

With Beckham being paid $4.25 million by the Browns after going unclaimed, other teams that didn't have enough cap space to claim him such as the Rams, Saints, and Buccaneers may also express interest in signing him at a cheaper price. At this stage, the Packers and Seahawks look to be the front runners for his services.

Per USA Today's Josina Anderson, Beckham doesn't plan to rush into making a decision on who he will play for next and will take his time weighing multiple offers. With negotiations already under way, the Seahawks are expected to be aggressive in pursuit, but they took quite the gamble opting not to claim him when they had the cap space to do so and it's far from guaranteed he will wind up in the Pacific Northwest.