The New York Giants reported for training camp less than two days ago, and star wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. has already caused a stir around the league.
In a video posted by Uninterrupted, Beckham outlined one of his main career goals, and it didn't have anything to do with bringing the Lombardi Trophy back to MetLife Stadium. Instead, the 24-year-old LSU product stated his desire to be the NFL's highest-paid player.
"It's like the elephant in the room, and you don't want to talk about it," Beckham said. "But I've gotten to the point in my life where I'm like...there's no need to not talk about it...I believe that I will be hopefully not just the highest-paid receiver in the league, but the highest-paid, period."
It was a big statement from Beckham, especially in a league that values quarterbacks more than ever before. Of the 12 players to make over $20 million last season, nine were quarterbacks, while the highest-paid wide receiver in the game, Dez Bryant, made just $17 million.
Beckham has been among the best wideouts in the game in his three seasons, racking up over 4,000 receiving yards and 35 touchdowns while making the Pro Bowl every year. Still, becoming the highest-paid player in the league is a lofty goal. The 24-year-old is under contract for two more seasons, so accounting for inflation, he'd likely need to secure upwards of $25 million per year.
The bold declaration came less than two months after Beckham skipped workouts in a move that appeared to be a holdout designed to net a new contract. He skipped all of the Giants' voluntary OTA workouts, prompting head coach Ben McAdoo to express his disappointment to the media.
Beckham was undeterred, however, retweeting this tweet.
I'm sick of folks acting like star athletes must always do what a coach asks. McAdoo wants @OBJ_3 at workouts? See ya when it's mandatory.— rolandsmartin (@rolandsmartin) May 26, 2017
These antics may be distracting, but they aren't anything new from Beckham. This is the same receiver who punched a hole in Lambeau Field after a playoff loss to the Packers and once faked a marriage proposal to a kicking net. He's one of the most animated and outspoken players in the NFL, and the Giants know it.
The team's front office, for its part, seems intent on keeping Beckham — perhaps at any cost. Per the New York Post, Giants owner John Mara recently remarked that "we certainly don't want to see him playing in another uniform."
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