It’s been a week since Aaron Rodgers made his intentions of joining the New York Jets public. While a trade has not been finalized, fans of Gang Green have already begun to look at different ways the team’s front office could look to drastically improve the roster.
New York’s acquisition of Allen Lazard to start free agency was certainly a step in the right direction, but the Jets aren’t yet out on two legitimate All-Pro receiver options that could be interested in joining should Rodgers quickly follow.
Those two available names are Odell Beckham Jr. and DeAndre Hopkins.
OBJ and Hopkins both have been All-Pros throughout their career and both are over the age of 30. Beckham could potentially come as a free agent but Hopkins would need to be traded from Arizona. Both receivers have their merit, and both would be an instant upgrade over what the Jets currently have as a top-2 option.
But which receiver would be a better fit for what the Jets want to do in 2023?
The case for Beckham
Coming off a torn ACL in Super Bowl LVI, OBJ is finally healthy for the first time in over a year. With a good quarterback, Beckham has always put up solid numbers in New York and Los Angeles. His performance in the Super Bowl before he got hurt had him on the cusp of winning the MVP of the game as well.
Rodgers has always wanted to play with Beckham. As a free agent, the Jets wouldn’t need to give up more assets for a top receiver (on top of the ones they will give up for their quarterback). OBJ makes arguably the most sense out of any available receiver to have the Jets try and chase.
The case for Hopkins
Comparing their careers, DeAndre Hopkins has been the better overall receiver than OBJ. While his numbers have certainly dipped in recent years, the Cardinal’s rotating cast of quarterbacks didn’t help the former Texan either.
Hopkins is still lethal as a deep receiver and route-runner. He would allow Lazard to work well from the slot and pair nicely with Garrett Wilson on the outside. If the Jets were to give Arizona a nice package, they would instantly have a top offense in the NFL that would rival even Kansas City’s.
The case for neither
Both Hopkins and OBJ are excellent receivers and could fit what the Jets want to do in 2023 nicely. But in the end, it may not be in the team’s best interest to sign/trade for either of the top wideouts.
Wilson is a budding star at the position and Lazard offers a safety blanket that fits nicely with what Rodgers wants to do. With Elijah Moore producing nicely in the slot, the Jets have a trio of wideouts that can consistently win one-on-one matchups against any defense. Adding another top-flight receiver would only lessen the targets for some of their younger receivers and add animosity once Rodgers inevitably retires.
There is, of course, a lot of good that could come from the Jets trying to upgrade at receiver, but with pressing needs at other positions, seeing what they have currently on the roster may not be such a bad thing.