The location of Odell Beckham Jr's next NFL stop remains one of the most intriguing stories yet to emerge from free agency.
While the former New York Giants and Los Angeles Rams star mulls his future options, the New England Patriots have been making moves to boost their red zone productivity and the arrival of a Pro Bowl left tackle in Cincinnati has had a knock-on effect.
Beckham Jr. is ready to make his long-awaited comeback after the ACL injury he sustained in the NFL Championship Game last year forced him to sit out the entire 2022 season.
The Buffalo Bills were among his reported suitors last summer when he was going through his rehabilitation with former Rams teammate Von Miller actively campaigning for a deal to be brokered.
He held a private workout for over a dozen of teams, including the Bills, last week in Arizona to show off his readiness for a return.
His contract demands could be a potential sticking point, but the 30-year-old has tweeted to deny the claims he's seeking a multi-year deal that pays him at least $20million per season.
He did suggest some NFL teams had been trying to get him to sign for too little, declaring that "4 (million) AINT enough".
The Bills, who created around $37million in cap space thanks to some recent contract restructuring, have reportedly "checked in" with OBJ regarding a contract, according to NFL insider and The Score's Jordan Schultz.
Buffalo were seemingly out of the race for Beckham Jr at the 20m level, but will be encouraged to hear that he would be willing to play for less - at least initially.
During his time with the Rams, which included both regular season and postseason games, Beckham Jr recorded a total of 48 receptions for 593 receiving yards and seven touchdowns across 12 games.
Notably, he played a crucial role in the team's 20-17 victory over the San Francisco 49ers in the NFC Championship game, where he contributed greatly with nine catches for 113 yards.
The New England Patriots ranked dead last in the NFL for red zone scoring percentage last year, coming away with a touchdown just over 42% of the time they made it inside their opponents' 20-yard line.
That was significantly down on the 63% they achieved in 2021 and most of the blame for the decrease landed at the door of second-year QB Mac Jones.
Bill Belichick is not ready to give up on the former Alabama star and has revamped Jones' receiving arsenal to boost New England's red zone potency.
The Patriots are signing free-agent tight end Mike Gesicki to a one-year contract worth up to $9 million, according to ESPN's Adam Schefter and Field Yates.
The signing of the former Miami Dolphins star comes days after New England traded tight end Jonnu Smith to the Atlanta Falcons for a 2023 seventh-round pick.
The Patriots also snapped up JuJu Smith-Schuster in the first wave of free agency to replace the departing Jakobi Meyers, who left for a lucrative payday from the Las Vegas Raiders.
Gesicki had become an afterthought in the Dolphins' dynamic offense, despite setting career highs in receptions (73) and receiving yards (780) during his breakout 2021 campaign.
The addition of Smith-Schuster and Gesicki to a receiving room that includes Hunter Henry and DeVante Parker gives Jones plenty of physical contested-catch options for when things get tight inside the 20.
For the second straight year, Cincinnati have prioritized upgrading their offensive line in free agency. But this week's swoop for Orlando Brown, the top left tackle to hit the open market, took a few by surprise.
The Bengals' incumbent starter at the position, Jonah Williams, seems to have been among that number as his reaction has been to demand a trade - according to NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport.
The Bengals drafted Williams 11th overall in the first round of the 2019 draft, but he missed all of his rookie year because of a torn labrum in his left shoulder.
Although he was a regular starter for two undeniably successful seasons in which the Bengals reached the NFL Championship Game in 2021 before falling to the Kansas City Chiefs in the AFC Championship Game last January, QB protection issues remained the team's Achilles heel.
Williams' performance level dipped in 2022 as he went from eight sacks allowed and a 77.1 PFF grade the year before to 12 sacks allowed and a 61.2 PFF grade.