The New York Giants’ trade of Odell Beckham Jr. is the top story of last night and today in sports. Beckham is heading to the Cleveland Browns in exchange for a first-round and third-round pick this year and safety Jabrill Peppers.
There were whispers of a potential Beckham trade for a while before the news broke quickly late last night. Now, we have some reasoning behind why the Giants made the shocking move, less than a year after they gave Beckham a massie contract extension.
It is an explanation that you could have guessed, but that doesn’t mean it makes sense. Basically, the team traded Beckham because he was hurting Eli Manning’s feelings.
According to SNY’s Ralph Vacchiano, the team had determined Beckham “had become too much of a pain in the ass,” and were afraid of it worsening.
It was reportedly “not a football decision.” Beckham became frustrated by Manning’s declining play when the season started, and then annoyed Giants’ management by doing an interview with ESPN’s Josina Anderson where he refused to say if the Giants had a QB problem or not.
In that same interview, Beckham was asked if he was happy in New York and he said “It’s a tough question,” before he waxed poetic about the sunshine in California. That did not sit well with Mara, coming about a month after the owner gave him a $20 million signing bonus and guaranteeing him $65 million to play for a New York team.
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Behind the scenes, it got worse. Beckham didn’t hide his unhappiness with the offense, particularly when talking to his fellow receivers. Manning publicly remained supportive of Beckham, and insisted he wasn’t affected by his receiver’s seeming lack of support. But some of his friends were sure Manning was bothered by what seemed like a needless distraction.
Eli Manning, the 38-year-old, washed up veteran QB, was chosen by the New York Giants over Beckham, the star 26-year-old receiver. Manning, who should have been released following the 2017 season and replaced by Sam Darnold if the Giants took him No. 2 overall, is hanging on to his job because Beckham (righfutly) got frustrated with his poor play.
You wonder why bad team stay bad, because of stuff like this. For a franchise with four Super Bowl titles, the Giants certainly have spent a lot of time (1964-1980, 1991-99 and 2013-now) down in the dregs of the NFL.
One common theme in those eras: the Mara family owned the franchise, which it does to this day. Incompetence starts at the top.