Everyone had same joke about Malik Nabers calling off bet after first Giants practice

Everyone had same joke about Malik Nabers calling off bet after first Giants practice

After being forced to play with Daniel Jones, New York Giants wide receiver Malik Nabers called off a bet with former LSU teammate Jayden Daniels.
2024 NFL Draft - Portraits
2024 NFL Draft – Portraits / Todd Rosenberg/GettyImages

Everyone has seen this story before: A talented LSU wide receiver who makes one-handed catches look ordinary gets drafted by the New York Giants. For the next four years, he is asked to rescue passes and turn would-be interceptions into receptions.

The Giants had an opportunity to select a rookie quarterback in the 2024 NFL Draft, but doing so would have meant admitting that it was a mistake to sign quarterback Daniel Jones to a four-year, $160 million contract prior to the 2023 season. Instead, the Giants selected LSU wide receiver Malik Nabers with the No. 6 overall pick.

During an appearance on “The Pivot” podcast, Nabers revealed that he made a $10,000 bet with former LSU quarterback Jayden Daniels on which one of them would be named 2024 NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year.

Fans believe Malik Nabers is already unhappy with Daniel Jones

Nabers told reporters on Friday that the wager was nullified after he learned more about the league’s gambling policy.

“I’m educated now that I got here about sports betting and gambling,” Nabers said. “We’re calling the bet off. There is no bet now. It was just another brother pushing another brother to try to get to success. That’s all it was.”

The NFL prohibits players “from placing, soliciting, or facilitating any bet, whether directly or through a third party, on any NFL game, practice or other event.” In 2022, the policy banned “private wagers between teammates, family and friends, or others,” although that language was not included in the 2023 policy.

It’s entirely plausible that Nabers is telling the truth since rookies typically begin mini-camp with orientation sessions that review the league’s gambling policy. But fans, of course, have a different theory: Nabers just happened to remember that his quarterback is Daniel Jones.

Few people seem to have faith in Jones after the 2023 season. The Athletic’s Mike Sando said that Nabers “can’t save” Jones and NFL Network’s Daniel Jeremiah believes that backup quarterback Drew Lock could even beat out Jones in training camp, per Bleacher Report.

It’s easy to assume that Nabers, or any other wide receiver, would prefer to avoid the Giants offense. Nabers didn’t help his case when he deflected a question about his opinion on Jones as a quarterback.

“I’ll just wait until I get here to see all that,” Nabers said after being drafted.

Nabers hasn’t actually practiced with Jones yet, so it’s unlikely that the cancellation of the bet had anything to do with the teams. While Nabers may come to despise his quarterback in the season ahead, Jones hasn’t hindered the rookie’s production just yet.

It’s unlikely that Nabers will be able to win rookie honors over Daniels. No position in football is more dependent on another player’s performance as wide receiver. Savvy route running can’t help if a quarterback can’t deliver the ball with rhythm and accuracy. Even Randy Moss, whose career was being buried by the Oakland Raiders in 2006, had a premature eulogy written for his career before he was traded to the New England Patriots.

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Calvin Ridley walked so Malik Nabers, Jayden Daniels could run: Rookies call off wager

The past mistakes of Tennessee Titans wide receiver Calvin Ridley taught rookies Malik Nabers and Jayden Daniels a valuable lesson, leading to them calling off a $10,000 head-to-head wager they had.

By Lior Lampert

LSU v Alabama
LSU v Alabama / Kevin C. Cox/GettyImages

Many remember when then-Atlanta Falcons wide receiver Calvin Ridley was handed a season-long suspension for gambling on NFL games during the 2021 campaign while he was away from the team tending to mental health concerns. However, not everyone seems to have learned their lesson — 10 players (and one coach) have been penalized for betting.

But it appears that former college teammates and now divisional rivals Malik Nabers and Jayden Daniels have quickly realized that the league is not taking its representatives wagering on games (or any sport) lightly, as evidenced by the two calling off a $10,000 bet they had between the two of them for 2024 AP NFL Rookie of the Year honors.

Calvin Ridley walked so Malik Nabers and Jayden Daniels could run: Rookies call off ROTY wager

Nabers said that he and Daniels agreed to cancel their expensively friendly wager after being “educated on the NFL’s gambling policy,” per Jordan Raanan of ESPN.

After spending the past two seasons at LSU together and forming arguably the most dynamic quarterback-wide receiver tandem in college football, Daniels was selected with the second overall pick of the NFL Draft by the Washington Commanders to be their long-term franchise quarterback. The New York Giants took Nabers at No. 6, instantly slotting in as their primary offensive weapon following the offseason departure of two-time Pro Bowl running back Saquon Barkley and the lack of pass-catchers on the depth chart. So, it is reasonable for both players to think they can earn Rookie of the Year honors.

While it is understandable that the NFL is working diligently to disassociate its athletes and coaches from the sports betting realm, it is disappointing that we don’t get to see a consensual head-to-head bet between two grown adults with lucrative and fully guaranteed rookie contracts. Considering the Commanders and Giants play at least twice a year, it would have been fun to see the two rookies duke it out with a personal incentive on the line.

Regardless, Ridley walked so Nabers and Daniels could run, saving the two rookies from themselves and reminding them that the $10,000 is not worth jeopardizing their careers.

Jayden Daniels and Malik Nabers made a friendly wager they’ll both definitely lose

Jayden Daniels and Malik Nabers may have made a bet that neither former LSU star will win.

By John Buhler

Jayden Daniels, Malik Nabers, LSU Tigers
Jayden Daniels, Malik Nabers, LSU Tigers / Kevin C. Cox/GettyImages

Who doesn’t love a friendly wager between college friends? Most of my best friends are people I went to Georgia with, so I can relate to what this pair of former LSU stars are doing. Jayden Daniels and Malik Nabers have apparently made a betfor some incredibly small amount ($10,000) that if either wins NFL Rookie of the Year honors, the loser has to pay up. What if neither ends up winning the bet?

As Daniels confirmed to Keyshawn Johnson while appearing on All Facts No Brakes, this is just friendly wager between two top-10 picks in the 2024 NFL Draft. The 2023 Heisman Trophy winner went No. 2 overall to the Washington Commanders, while the unanimous All-American wide receiver went a few picks later to the division rival New York Giants. While they could win, don’t count on it…

This is because they were the second quarterback and wide receiver taken respectively in this draft. The runaway favorite to win NFL Rookie of the Year is former USC quarterback Caleb Williams, who went No. 1 overall to the Chicago Bears. If there was a better bet to be had in the wide receiver market, look no further than Ohio State’s Biletnikoff winner Marvin Harrison Jr., now with Arizona.

Here is a clip of Daniels confirming to Johnson about the $10,000 bet he made with Nabers.

Jayden Daniels and Malik Nabers have a $10,000 bet over OROY honors

I think it goes without saying that Daniels is the overwhelming favorite between the two LSU stars to bring home NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year honors. This has everything to do with Daniels being a quarterback and Nabers being a wide receiver. If the Commanders are halfway decent, Daniels will get a ton of credit. Nabers will need for the Giants to be otherworldly to have his best shot at this.

When compared to other contenders such as Williams and Harrison, it is really going to come down to each team’s records at the end of the season. If Chicago is markedly better than Washington, Williams should win the award going away. What gives Harrison a better shot than Nabers is he is playing with a far better quarterback in Arizona, Kyler Murray, than what Nabers has in New York.

Overall, I would have Williams, Daniels and Harrison as my best picks to win NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year honors next year, one, two, three. Is Nabers a top-five pick for me? Sure, why not? However, I think other pass-catchers such as Williams’ teammate Rome Odunze in Chicago and new Las Vegas Raiders tight end Brock Bowers might have better quarterback play going their way than Nabers.

My favorite part about this bet between former LSU teammates is that neither will be cashing in on it.

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Chiefs best backup plan after losing Zay Jones to the Cardinals

The Kansas City Chiefs could still be in the market to sign a wide receiver after missing out on wide receiver Zay Jones.

By Kinnu Singh

Nov 26, 2023; Paradise, Nevada, USA; Kansas City Chiefs coach Andy Reid watches from the sidelines
Nov 26, 2023; Paradise, Nevada, USA; Kansas City Chiefs coach Andy Reid watches from the sidelines / Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The Kansas City Chiefs are Super Bowl champions, but their once-potent offense looked lethargic throughout the 2023 season. The team’s success was in spite of their offense, not because of it.

Since Tyreek Hill left for the Miami Dolphins, the Chiefs have been missing a dynamic element from their offense. Kansas City hasn’t quite been able to replace Hill, but that hasn’t stopped them from trying. Entering the offseason, Kansas City focused on bolstering their offensive tackles and wide receivers.

With the potential suspension of Rice looming ahead, Kansas City was reportedly among several teams bidding for free agent wide receiver Zay Jones, but the former Jacksonville Jaguar signed with the Arizona Cardinals on a one-year, $4.25 million deal.

Kansas City Chiefs could sign Michael Thomas after losing Zay Jones

After losing out on Jones, the Chiefs’ options for a veteran wide receiver are dwindling.

Out of the options available, former New Orleans Saints wide receiver Michael Thomas stands out. The former two-time All-Pro had a stellar start to his career. In 2019, Thomas won the NFL Offensive Player of the Year award after compiling 149 catches for 1,725 yards and nine touchdowns. Injuries prevented Thomas from repeating his success after that season.

Thomas does come with some risk. The 31-year-old hasn’t played in more than 10 games or recorded more than 450 receiving yards in each of the past four seasons. Still, he’s the best remaining option in Kansas City’s price range.

According to Spotrac, the Chiefs have about $15.3 million available salary cap space. A significant portion of that will be used for their rookie contracts, while some of it will be reserved for mid-season transactions, trades, and signings. That would explain why the Chiefs weren’t willing to spend more than $4 million to pry Jones away from the Cardinals. Former Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver Tyler Boyd would have been a perfect fit, but the wideout recently signed with the Tennessee Titans on a similar deal to Jones.

Even if Kansas City doesn’t land a wideout in free agency, they still have an improved wide receiver room. In early April, the Chiefs signed former Arizona Cardinals wide receiver Marquise Brown, a speedster who has been underutilized in run-heavy schemes. In the 2024 NFL Draft, the Chiefs traded up four spots to select Texas wide receiver Xavier Worthy with the No. 28 overall pick. It’s no coincidence, either — Worthy set the record for the 40-yard dash.

If Worthy provides solid production in his rookie season and Rice is available for a late playoff run, Kansas City may be fine with the group they currently possess.

NEXT: Chiefs reportedly drafted off of the Patrick Mahomes wishlist

Giants missed out on perfect Saquon Barkley replacement during NFL Draft

The New York Giants missed their chance to potentially find an ideal long-term replacement for former franchise running back Saquon Barkley via the NFL Draft.

By Lior Lampert

Philadelphia Eagles v New York Giants
Philadelphia Eagles v New York Giants / Jim McIsaac/GettyImages

After losing franchise icon and former 2018 No. 2 overall draft pick Saquon Barkley via free agency to the divisional rival Philadelphia Eagles and getting nothing in return, the New York Giantshave done little to fill the void left by him in the backfield in a way that will instill confidence in the Big Blue fan base.

The Giants signed veteran Devin Singletary, formerly of the Houston Texans and Buffalo Bills (where he overlapped with New York general manager Joe Schoen and head coach Brian Daboll from 2019-21), to a three-year, $16.5 million contract this offseason. Moreover, they selected receiver-turned-running-back Tyrone Tracy Jr. in the fifth round of the 2024 NFL Draft. But he only has one season of experience as a full-time tailback. However, recent intel from ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler suggests the former Purder Boilermaker wasn’t their top choice, missing out on a potentially perfect replacement for Barkley — MarShawn Lloyd.

Giants missed out on perfect Saquon Barkley replacement during NFL Draft

“Like Dallas [Cowboys], New York also had its sights on USC running back MarShawn Lloyd as a future lead back but didn’t have a pick between Nos. 71 and 107. Lloyd went 88th. But the Giants definitely had him on the radar in Day 2,” Fowler states.

As Fowler points out, the G-Men weren’t the only NFC East team interested in Lloyd and viewed him as a long-term solution to their backfield, citing the Dallas Cowboys as the other. However, the latter passed up on the USC product in favor of Notre Dame linebacker Marist Liufau with the No. 87 overall selection, allowing him to fall to the Green Bay Packers with the next pick. But had New York been in a position on the board to draft him, it sounds like they would have considered the idea of pulling the trigger.

Lloyd was the top-ranked running back (No. 56 overall) on Daniel Jeremiah of NFL Network’s list of top 150 overall 2024 draft prospects, somehow sliding to the Packers at No. 88.

After spending his first three collegiate years at South Carolina, Lloyd transferred to USC for his senior year, where he amassed 1,052 scrimmage yards (820 rushing, 232 receiving) and nine touchdowns on 129 touches. Now, he will leave Giants fans wondering what could have been if the additions of Singletary and Tracy combined with second-year back Eric Gray and 2021 sixth-rounder Gary Brightwell cannot get the job done.

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