Odell Beckham Jr. at the Cowboys? Jerry Jones isn’t subtle about interests

For those keeping track at home, Jerry Jones didn’t say “if”. He said “when”.

The Dallas Cowboys the owner of the team does not hesitate to participate in the Odell Beckham Jr contest. He encourages them.

“Odell is someone we appreciate around the world for what he is as a competitor”, Jones said Tuesday morning on Dallas radio station 105.3 The Fan. “I know the Cowboys star on that helmet, when he puts it on, could look really good.”

This decision could come as soon as this week.

The 2014 first-round pick and three-time Pro Bowl wide receiver has yet to play a wink this season as he recovers from a torn left ACL suffered in last season’s Super Bowl. Deadlines for Beckham’s return hovered from mid-November to early December, according to reports, but a Fox Sports insider Jay Glazer reported Sunday that Beckham should “be fully cleared next week”.

“There should be plenty of suitors for his services,” Glazer added.

Odell Beckham Jr. to the Dallas Cowboys? Team owner Jerry Jones seems to be pushing for it. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)

The Cowboys’ public interest has slowly crescendoed, with Jones saying as recently as Oct. 23 that “you can get in a little water” discussing Beckham’s interest. The reluctance disappeared. The chase is on.

“I think a veteran player like Odell, my experience was when we brought in a veteran player, they kicked in in terms of being able to compete,” Jones said Tuesday. “You’re looking at a player whose experience far outweighs any ambiguity as to how he’s going to fit into your system.”

Head coach Mike McCarthy also expressed his affinity for Beckham on Monday:

The The Cowboys defense largely fueled their 6-2 start to the season, their attack rounded into more recent form. Dallas ranks 15th in the league with 22.6 points per game and 22nd with an average of 322.1 yards. A efficient racing game drove much of that, as the Cowboys’ passing offense is only 25th-best at 190.6 yards per game.

But already, Dallas’ internal roster is moving in the right direction. Strategist Dak Prescott started and won back-to-back games after missing five while recovering from a Week 1 thumb fracture in his throwing hand. Recipient Michael Gallup had his most effective, albeit still modest, day with four catches for 49 yards in the Cowboys’ 49-29 win over the Bears as he regains confidence after the ACL tear. Veteran James Washington (broken foot) is expected to be released from injured reserve soon, and the Cowboys’ rookie duo of Peyton Hendershot and Jake Ferguson combined for 153 yards and three touchdowns on 18 catches.

“I like the way we throw the ball with our tight ends,” Jones said. “I think that’s significant in this conversation because as I see that going forward, that could basically dictate how aggressive we are in any kind of additions we have here with our receivers.”

Beckham or not, Jones insisted he “really likes where we are at with our receiving corps.” The Cowboys have lost veterans amari cooper (trade to Browns) and Cedrick Wilson (free agency, Dolphins) in the offseason while expressing confidence in the third-year pro Lamb CeeDee as their best receiver. Lamb averaged 69.5 yards per game and scored three touchdowns on eight outings. He struggled with drops at times, but caught 71.4 percent of targets for 77 yards and a score against the Lions just before the Cowboys’ bye.

Jones touted Lamb’s ability to extend plays.

“Our offense is designed to embellish that aspect of his game,” Jones said. “You would expect a player at this stage of his career to show a marked improvement since coming on as a rookie. You really see that. can make those 20-yard plays. You gotta have them.

If the Cowboys choose to act to pursue Beckham – and win his heart among what could be a crowded field of suitors, this will only increase the stable of arms.

Beckham had 7,367 yards and 56 touchdowns in 96 career games, and he was effective early on when he joined the Los Angeles Rams in the middle of last season. Beckham caught 27 passes for 305 yards and five touchdowns in eight regular season games, and added 21 more catches for 288 yards and two playoff scores en route to the Rams championship. Even at the Super Bowl, before suffering his second left ACL tear in 21 months, Beckham was a force, catching two passes for 52 yards and a touchdown.

Jones pointed to this body of work to justify pursuing a 30-year-old, wound-riddled weapon.

He thinks the Cowboys are ready to improve in the quick passing game, third downs, short-range situations and extended plays in which Prescott throws running.

The Jones eternally optimistic see the promise. The question, to which he seems to have a favorite answer, is whether Beckham joins the ride.

“We may or may not be able to do something in terms of an additive, adding something to the receiving body,” Jones said. “But if we don’t, I like where we are.”

Follow Yahoo Sports’ Jori Epstein on Twitter @JoriEpstein

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