When a player comes out of college, he is looked at extensively. Everything from his background to his playing history is gone through with a fine-tooth comb. So why do some players get selected even if they check out poorly? There are some cases in which talent outweighs the attitude or off-field issues and the players are still selected. Thus is the case with Odell Beckham Jr.
The New York Giants drafted Odell Beckham Jr. in the first round of the 2014 draft. They took him with the 12th overall pick. He was drafted at a time in which the Giants needed a spark at Wide Receiver, which would be provided by Beckham Jr..
After missing the beginning of the 2014 season with a hamstring injury, Beckham Jr’s. opening act came on October 5th, 2014 against the Atlanta Falcons. He would record his first NFL touchdown in this game. Now all the hoopla could begin.
During his rookie season, in a game against the Dallas Cowboys, OBJ had the catch of the season. Beckham Jr. made this catch with three fingers of his right hand while falling backward into the end zone. I have to admit. It was probably the greatest catch I have seen in my lifetime.
Since that catch Beckham Jr. has made other acrobatic catches. He practices his skill before every game. However, there is one skill that he does not practice, and that is his attitude. Odell Beckham Jr. can be taken out of a game not just by your best defender, but also by his attitude and lack of team aspects. Some may say this fires him up. Others see it as a distraction.
Take for instance the game against the Carolina Panthers in 2015. OBJ had several confrontations with Josh Norman. This cost his team multiple times in the game. During this game, Beckham Jr. was flagged four times. 3 of those 4 were personal foul penalties. A case where his attitude overtook his talent and cost his team.
Another instance for attitude over talent was in the game Monday Night against the Minnesota Vikings. Vikings CB Xavier Rhodes was in OBJ’s head from the start. He was jawing, shoving and roughing him up from the first play on. Beckham Jr. Let this bother him to the point where he couldn’t be the talent that he should be. On a post route, OBJ gave up on the ball, and Rhodes intercepted it. If he would not have let the CB in his head, he could have continued on the play and had a chance at the ball or, at the very least, broke up the play. Another simple case of attitude over talent.
Beckham Jr. is one of the best receivers in the game today. However, his attitude is getting him compared to the likes of Chad Johnson and Terrell Owens. I am not saying that these guys were bad, but they were clearly attitude over talent. If things did not go their way, they were clearly self-removed from the game. The same is happening with Beckham Jr.
He still has time to change his mark. He is only in his third season in the NFL. Temper your attitude inside yourself, young man. Use that heat to destroy defensive backs and make your team better. Don’t let it come out and destroy your team. Make your attitude better your talent. Don’t let it become your talent.