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Cole Beasley had other options (and still does)

Mike Florio and Chris Simms dive into a matchup of veteran QBs, as Tom Brady leads the Buccaneers against Aaron Rodgers and the Packers in Week 3.

Buccaneers receiver Cole Beasley will make his debut on Sunday, and there’s a chance he’ll be used extensively in his first game with his new team.

Some continue to wonder why it took so long for Beasley to find a new NFL home. Per a source with knowledge of the situation, Beasley had interest from multiple other teams. Specifically, the Giants, Panthers, and Commanders have tried to sign him.

The Giants have been the most persistent, we’re told. But the offers have been at or near the league minimum. Beasley, who has earned nearly $50 million in his career, doesn’t need to play for whatever he can get.

So he waited. And now an opportunity has arisen in Tampa, where he can play and contribute and work with a great quarterback and possibly win a Super Bowl.

If he stays. Although he’s on the practice squad, Beasley can sign with any other team -- except the next opponent of the Buccaneers in any given week. If/when a team like the Giants sufficiently sweetens the pot, Beasley could choose to sign there.

Starting today, Beasley gets a chance to prove to everyone that he’s still one of the best slot receivers in the game. He caught, we’re told, a lot of passes in practice this week. In fact, quarterback Tom Brady practiced on Wednesday specifically to help get Beasley ready for today’s game against the Packers.

Speaking of Brady, we’re told he actually called Giants coach Brian Daboll (a former Patriots assistant) to thank Daboll for not being able to close the deal with Beasley. Brady was busting Daboll’s chops. But the deeper point could be that Brady has big plans for Beasley.