The New York Giants made a huge splash the first day of free agency with the addition or WR Brandon Marshall. A move this big gives the Giants one of the best air attacks in the NFL. Paring Marshall with Odell Beckham Jr was the icing on the cake Eli Manning was hoping to have with Victor Cruz. Too bad we only got a chance to see that duo for one year before injuries took that away.
The question is not whether Eli Manning will enjoy throwing to Marshall and Beckham, it’s a debate if the two prima donna receivers can coexist on the same team.
The Giants already had their hands full with Beckham and his outbursts. Now, the Giants will have to deal with Marshall and his loose lips when it comes to the media. No receiver in the game has taken the mantle from Terrell Owens just yet but if I was a betting man I would put my money on Beckham as the heir apparent. The issue may not come to wins and losses, it will boil down to receptions and production.
As the Giants main threat over the last three seasons, Beckham was targeted 458 times with 288 catches for 4122 yards and 35 touchdowns. It goes without saying that he’s been Manning’s top target. Marshall, on the other hand, has had help while playing for the New York Jets but he still managed to be targeted 301 times with 169 catches for 2290 yards and 17 touchdowns in two seasons with the Jets. Great numbers considering they were done with Geno Smith and Ryan Fitzpatrick at the helm.
As great as Marshall has been, he has never played with a QB that has the talent that Eli has. Also, he has never had a counterpart as talented as ODB. Beckham and Marshall both can work the middle of the field and Marshall’s height will give Eli the target he’s been missing for the back of the end zone fades that used to go to Plaxico Burress.
What some players fail to realize is that playing in New York is not as easy as it seems. Beckham is now under fire for off/on the field issues but he’s accustomed to it now. Marshall can keep his old locker as he has had two years to deal with the NY Times and The Post as well. Together, these two talented, yet outspoken players will not only give defenses problems, they may very well cause the Giants a few headaches as well.
Can it work? Yes, but it depends on how bad each player wants to win.