Is Odell Beckham Jr. Going To Ruin The New York Giants’ Season?
Odell Beckham Jr. is, without a doubt, the best player on the New York Giants this season. Eli Manning might have more Super Bowl rings, and he might technically be the leader of the Giants team. But OBJ is the most explosive player on the Giants’ roster—and one of the most explosive players in the entire NFL—so the Giants will go as he goes. And at the moment, they’re headed in the wrong direction due in large part to OBJ’s recent struggles.
In two of the Giants’ four games this season, OBJ has suffered emotional breakdowns on the field and cost his team big. Not surprisingly, the Giants lost those two games and were forced to deal with the fallout of OBJ’s actions in the days after. Last week, the Washington Redskins beat the Giants, but the big story after the game was a temper tantrum OBJ threw on the sideline that ended with him hitting a kicking net with his helmet and the net falling on his head. He also shed some tears after Manning threw an interception. And this week, OBJ picked up a costly personal foul penalty after he taunted Minnesota Vikings cornerback Xavier Rhodes following a catch. OBJ also had just three catches during the game and recorded a career-low 23 receiving yards, and he was clearly not himself during the game. Afterwards, he explained that he feels like he has a target on his back when it comes to both opposing players and referees.
“I just have to understand if I sneeze the wrong way, it will be a flag,” he said. “It will be a fine. If I tie my shoes the wrong way, it might be a fine or a flag. It is what it is. You have to understand that.”
The problem is that it doesn’t seem like OBJ understands that. He plays the game with so much passion and emotion that he frequently loses his cool and hurts his team. He seems somewhat apologetic about it later, but in the moment, OBJ is a lit fuse, just waiting to blow up and wreak havoc. When he channels that emotion and directs it towards actually playing the game of football, it’s a great thing for the Giants. But when he doesn’t? The Giants go from being 2-0 and looking like the class of the NFC East to 2-2 and looking like they might need to find a better way to control OBJ.
It’s a long season, and OBJ and Giants have plenty of time to turn things around. But getting OBJ to change his approach to the game almost overnight is going to be a tall task for the team.