From the moment the 2018 regular season ended, the possibility existed of the 49ers making a run at trading for Giants receiver Odell Beckham Jr. Ultimately, the 49ers did. At the end of the day, however, the 49ers didn’t get a chance match or beat the package the Giants got from the Browns.
The recent ESPN article regarding the trade indicates that the 49ers were “stunned” by New York’s failure to shop Cleveland’s offer to the 49ers, given that San Fran G.M. John Lynch and Giants G.M. Dave Gettleman had been talking about a possible trade for “weeks.”
But it was smart for the Giants to not try to get more out of the 49ers. After all, the trade to Cleveland allowed the Giants to get Beckham out of the conference.
If the Giants had traded Beckham to the 49ers, the Giants would have seen him at least once every three years, and possibly every year depending on where the Giants and 49ers finish in their respective divisions. (The Giants don’t play the 49ers in 2019.) In theory, the Giants also would have been potentially competing with the 49ers each and every year for playoff berths and/or home-field advantage.
Then there’s the shared history of the two franchises, which resulted in plenty of hard-fought and even harder feelings between the teams in the 1980s and early 1990s. If the 49ers are on the verge of a turnaround, why should the Giants assist it by sending them one of the best receivers in the league?
So, yes, even at a time when the Giants have received plenty of warranted criticism for how they’re handling their business, they made a good business decision by ensuring that OBJ won’t be in their business more often than once every four years.