Although they are not mandatory, most players attend them as a display of commitment to their team. When the media reported that Odell Beckham Jr. didn’t attend and was working out with Johnny Manziel instead, fans went Ape you know what.
Each off-season, teams hold Organized Team Activity (OTA) practices to signify the unofficial beginning of next season. As agreed upon in the collective bargaining agreement, participation in OTAs is voluntary.
With already 288 receptions for 4122 yards and 35 touchdowns, Beckham is on his way to becoming the best wide receiver in New York Giants history. He is the reason Jerry Reese still has his job. He is the reason Ben McAdoo was promoted to head coach. It wasn’t Eli and those Apple turnovers. It was all Odell.
Without Beckham, the Giants’ offense would be an even bigger joke than it was last year. The Giants had Shane Vereen, Rashad Jennings, Victor Cruz, and Sterling Shepard but couldn’t score 30 points until the last game of the season.
The Giants made the playoffs in 2016 because of two reasons: their defense and Odell Beckham.
Coach McAdoo and Odell Beckham Jr Need To Get On The Same Page
McAdoo has never taken any jabs at Beckham and the furthest he would go when asked about Beckham and Olivier Vernon not being at OTAs, is that he would like his best players to attend.
That’s about all the pressure he can exert because the sessions are voluntary, and if McAdoo starts threatening Beckham, he will hear from the NFL Players Association.
McAdoo is trying to establish himself as a head coach. He got off to a good start in his rookie season with the Giants finishing 11-5 last year, beating the Cowboys twice and earning the No. 1 wild-card spot.
They went on to lose in the first round of the playoffs to the Packers with OBJ playing the worst game of his career.
Even Nike Sees The Value In Odell Beckham Jr.
Beckham is still playing under his rookie contract and thus only stands to make $3.3 million ($1.8 million in base salary + $1.5 million in signing bonus) in the 2017-18 NFL season.
Off the field, he stands to make more – a lot more- and he has Nike and you to thank for that.
I have the best fans in the world.. wild!! pic.twitter.com/dps6Mzgzsl
— Odell Beckham Jr (@OBJ_3) June 23, 2017
Beckham deserves some credit for his Nike pay raise. After all, he finished the 2016-17 NFL season ranked in the top five of most major statistical categories for wide receivers, including receptions, yards, yards/game and touchdowns.
But, he doesn’t deserve all the credit—some of that goes to you.
If you or anyone you know follows Odell Beckham Jr. on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook, send him a request for payment. (I’m kidding, of course.)
Brands look to partner with influencers. They would rather have a celebrity or in industry terms an ‘influencer’ than just a good singer or in this case a good football player.
The Pressure Will Be On The Giants Receivers To Be Good
Free agent signee Brandon Marshall, Sterling Shepard, Roger Lewis and Tavarres King are all looking sharp thus far as is first round draft pick, Evan Engram.
These receivers are all ready, willing and able – as well as hungry – and should the Giants ever have to play without their superstar wide out, they might just be OK.
Marshall alone gives the Giants a No. 1 receiver and he arrived at the Quest Diagnostics Training Center in top physical condition ready to work. He has looked smooth and is already in sync with QB Eli Manning.
This season, Shepard is working on solidifying his rapport with Manning and becoming more dynamic by increasing his yards after the catch ability.
What If Odell Beckham Jr Got Hurt In OTAs?
If Beckham were to get seriously hurt working out away from the Giants and couldn’t play in 2017, he could be denied his salary due to a non-football injury.
— STACK (@STACKMedia) June 23, 2017
That would cost him $1.84 million this year, and his contract could be tolled for a year, thus delaying his signing of a new deal. The Giants have already exercised his fifth-year option at over $8 million and, again, an injury could push back that salary by a full year.
So it behooves Beckham to be at Giants OTAs even if he picks his spots to participate. Of course, things get more dicey if a new deal isn’t signed before training camp, as he then becomes subject to major fines if he chooses not to report while under contract.
But if I’m Reese, I’m not feeling inclined to seriously negotiate a Beckham extension until I see him at the Giants facility.
A Diva? Maybe Not
Odell isn’t a diva. He may carry himself like one but let’s be honest, he is the Giants best offensive weapon.
Odell plays with a lot of passion and when called abound, he will deliver for the G-men. Beckham is a football star and tabloid fodder. You either love him or you hate him.
Regardless, you can’t get enough of him. Nike saw this. The Giants surely do, too. Their time to open the vault is coming soon, and they should know it’s going to be expensive.