The biggest trade of the offseason has been made official, as the Browns announced former Giants WR Odell Beckham Jr. is headed to Cleveland.
News broke on Tuesday night that the Giants' front office decided to trade their star receiver to the Browns in exchange for the team's 2019 first-round pick (No. 17 overall) and second third-round pick (No. 95) as well as S Jabrill Peppers.
Beckham, who SNY's Ralph Vacchiano heard from a source was "a little surprised" to hear from GM Dave Gettleman that the deal was done, wrote an official statement to the Browns website to show his excitement for this next chapter in his career.
"I'm extremely excited about the opportunity to be part of this organization and the direction they are headed," Beckham said. "I've already witnessed the energy fans bring in that city having been to some playoff games at The Q (Quicken Loans Arena). Browns fans deserve a winning football team. This is a fresh start for me and it's going to be great to join Baker (Mayield) and Jarvis (Landry) on this team. I will always appreciate the opportunity the Giants granted me and I'm thankful to them along with the fans and people in that city for supporting me.
"The Browns are an organization that is moving forward and it's exciting to be a part of something special that is in the process of being built. We have a lot of work ahead of us but I really feel like it's time for the Browns to come together, start winning a lot games and I'm grateful to be a part of that going forward."
As he mentioned, Beckham will be reuniting with his best friend and former LSU teammate Jarvis Landry as a dynamic duo for QB Baker Mayfield to work with. Beckham has been connected to the Browns in the past, with Landry trying to find a way for him to join him once again.
For the Giants, though, they will need to find Beckham's replacement either through the draft or free agency. It will be extremely hard to find a replacement of his caliber, but it appears the offense will now run through RB Saquon Barkley -- the team's first-round pick last season.
The Giants selected Beckham 12th overall in the 2014 NFL Draft, and he immediately made his impact in his rookie season as he rewrote the record books with 1,305 yards on 91 receptions with 12 touchdowns over 12 games. And, of course, he became an overnight sensation after "The Catch" -- a jaw-dropping, one-handed grab against the Cowboys at MetLife Stadium. He would win the Offensive Rookie of the Year Award in 2014 as well.
Overall, Beckham has totaled 5,476 totals yards on 390 receptions with 44 touchdowns. He has four 1,000-yard seasons over his five NFL years and has had three Pro Bowl bids, which came in his first three seasons with the Giants.
The Giants' trade of Olivier Vernon to Cleveland was also made official when the new league year began. New York received G Kevin Zeitler in exchange for the Giants' best defensive end.
Like his Giants teammate in Beckham, Vernon is excited to be a part of the Browns' defense.
"I'm excited to be a part of the Dawg Pound, be able to represent and help build something special in Cleveland," Vernon said. "The front office is adding pieces to the puzzle. We are trying to win. I was not expecting (Beckham to come, too). Odell is a great teammate and person. We both have our own goals of what we would like to accomplish and there is no better place to do that than Cleveland."
Vernon joined the Giants in 2016 as one of the top free agents at the time. He totaled 8.5 sacks, 64 combined tackles and 17 tackles for loss in 16 games that year. In the past two seasons, though, Vernon has been hindered by injury. He still managed 6.5 sacks and seven sacks in 2017 and 2018 respectively.