Odell Beckham Jr. made it clear early on that he was a different person. I remember that in my rookie year I had stopped at his closet when the broad receiver stretched his right hand with his fingers as long as garden hoses and introduced himself by name before I could do the same. It was a really insignificant thing, but I'm pretty sure it was the first time in my three decades of sports hunting that a star athlete had done that.
Beckham would use that right hand and the endless fingers he said passed on from his mother, a former track star, to make perhaps the NFL's most breathtaking touchdown in a November defeat against the Dallas Cowboys. That was a window into Beckham's career with the New York Giants: moments of breathtaking brilliance that have fallen victim to a series of defeats.
The Giants can no longer necessarily try on the fly or in competition. They start from the beginning, even if it is one year too late.
The superstar receiver goes to Cleveland and leaves a complete remodeling in New York. Bill Barnwell breaks down both sides of the deal.
Could Cleveland really be the favorites to make the playoffs? How many touchdowns will OBJ achieve in 2019? Our experts discuss.
On Tuesday night, Giants general manager Dave Gettleman swapped Beckham with the Cleveland Browns for the 17th overall victory of the next month, a Jabrill Peppers in the third round, who played his high school ball about a dozen miles from his role MetLife Stadium. Gettleman did not even make that move seven months after signing Beckham for a record five-year, $ 95 million contract.
"We reached him to 108," joked the GM on this late summer day.
Gettleman let go of the phone even before he was 27 years old.
The old-school giants have an old GM with a map in Gettleman, and there is no doubt that the receiver's high-maintenance ways have contributed to its exit. Beckham engaged Cornerstone Josh Norman in the Octagon, lost a fist fight with a kick net, proposed marrying the foot net, did boating before his terrible playoff performance against Green Bay – and then punched a hole in a Lambeau Field wall – and sat down Lil Wayne and Josina Anderson of ESPN interviewed everything from Eli Manning's arm to the heart of the team.
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Tom Coughlin, two-time Super Bowl champion at the Giants, once said Beckham has brought the Giants qualities" like I've never seen before ". Yet, three head coaches (Coughlin, Ben McAdoo and Pat Shurmur), two general managers (Jerry Reese and Gettleman) and a team president and co-owner (John Mara) could never quite figure out how to deal with Beckham and how he directs his team's boundless energy in a less disturbing direction.
Mara, Gettleman and Shurmur finally threw their hands and said enough. They sent Beckham to play with his dear friend and LSU teammate Jarvis Landry and the dynamic young quarter Baker Mayfield, who is the opposite of Giants' Manning.
The fast-moving Browns are all ready to occupy the world LeBron is vacant in Cleveland.
But the giants?
"Now they are in full-blown reconstruction, and the 38-year-old Eli is still there," said a league executive on Tuesday night. "The Running Back, [Saquon] Barkley, is Hall of Famer's first ballot if he stays healthy, but the problem is he's not a quarterback."
In Barkley's second-round development and signing of Beckham for his record deal in August, the Giants declared their intention to surround the diminishing Manning with enough explosive players to return him to lift competing form. They completed this plan with 5/11.
The Giants' new plan envisages bringing back Manning and then swapping the most physically talented player they've designed since Lawrence Taylor, earning a $ 16 million hit The recipient's deal is subject to the process. With more than five years of dedication by franchise players to a real star, who then dropped out of him less than seven months later, the Giants organization showed why they missed the playoffs in six of the past seven seasons.
Yes, Beckham was a handful who demanded constant care. He is not a simple employee and he could not always stay in the field.
But he was a spectacular player when he was in the field. He was the fastest player with 200 catches and 3,000 yards in the history of the league (30 games). , Beckham was an incredible booze as the 12th choice of the 2014 draft, and the Giants had to try their best to keep it long term.
Your surrender was an organizational failure from top to bottom.
"We did not sign him to act on him," Gettleman had said. Of course, if the Giants were to move Beckham to Cleveland, they should have damn well tried before the draft of last year before paying him the big bucks. They might have attempted to offer the Browns Beckham in a package for the fourth range, and perhaps they landed at Quarterback Sam Darnold (# 2) and Barkley (# 4 after) taking the jets a quarterback at No. 3). Then the Giants would have been in business.
Instead, people in the league are trying to figure out exactly what they are trying to achieve. Some executives believe Ohio State's Giants Dwayne Haskins will move to 6th and qualify for a 2019 start-to-finish Eli farewell tour that will somewhat appease fans during a 3-13 season and then deliver a draft Manning's successor in 2020.
Whatever they do and whatever the plan is, the giants have denied themselves and their fan base by delivering their otherworldly receiver. They are in the business of collecting and developing talent, and they have not developed Beckham. They gave him up instead. And they reminded the rest of the sport why they lost 24 of their last 32 games.