In an offseason full of major moves, perhaps none was as consequential — or surprising — as the New York Giants trading star wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. to the Cleveland Browns. Beckham had had his run-ins with the coaching staffs and front offices in New York, but the team had just signed him to a monster five-year, $90 million contract extension last offseason, and he then had another strong season with 77 catches, 1,052 yards and six touchdowns in just 12 games.
But the Giants shipped him out anyway, along with edge rusher Olivier Vernon, receiving just guard Kevin Zeitler, safety Jabrill Peppers, and the No. 17 overall pick in return. Beckham has been pretty open about being happy in Cleveland, especially with new quarterback Baker Mayfield.
And according to ESPN’s Dianna Russini, he has one thing on his mind now: making the Giants regret their decision to send him away.
“Odell is still transitioning,” Russini said. “He’s still getting over his ex-girlfriend. He cut his hair! I did that after I went through a breakup. It’s like the typical way that we all get through heartache. And I still think that Odell is going through the transition of being a New York Giant — where we can say all day long he was traded; he was fired from New York. And the pressure is on Odell. You don’t believe Odell has pressure on him? He has all the pressure in the world. Because he is motivated to show the New York Giants that they made the biggest mistake in franchise history by trading him.”
Through five NFL seasons, Beckham is one of the best receivers in the history of the league, having put up numbers that are frankly a little bit absurd. And he did it with a declining Eli Manning at quarterback. With Mayfield under center, his friend Jarvis Landry working opposite him, plus David Njoku, Nick Chubb, Duke Johnson, and more — and with Freddie Kitchens and Todd Monken designing the plays — Beckham could pick up in Cleveland right where he left off in New York. And if he does, well, the Giants probably will regret making that deal.