ORLANDO, Fla. — New York Giants co-owner Steve Tisch said Monday that he hopes star wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. remains a Giant for years to come.
But Tisch also made it clear that a contract extension for Beckham is not a front-burner issue for the organization.
“Odell’s contract will be negotiated at the appropriate time,” Tisch said during a break at the NFL’s annual owners meetings. “At the moment, conversations between (Giants GM) Dave Gettleman and Odell’s representatives are at the earliest, most premature stages.”
Beckham is entering his fifth year with the Giants, and as is the case with all first-round picks under the current collective bargaining agreement, the Giants held a team option for his fifth year. Last spring they exercised that option, which will cost $8.459 million this year, and that money became fully guaranteed when the new league year began March 14.
But Beckham, whose production in his first three years in the NFL was historic for a wide receiver, obviously believes he’s worth more than that. He holds NFL records for fewest games to 200 catches and fewest games to 3,000 career receiving yards. He had at least 1,300 receiving yards and at least 10 touchdowns in each of his first three seasons. He skipped out on optional spring practices last year, and there’s been widespread speculation for months now that he would hold out this year if he didn’t get a new deal.
“At the moment, that’s hypothetical,” Tisch said. “We have not been contacted by anyone representing Odell making that comment or suggesting that’s something he might do.”
Beckham missed 12 games last year due to injury, so he’s not negotiating from a position of peak strength. He also had a tendency to find himself in the spotlight for reasons that the organization doesn’t necessarily approve of: the pre-playoff game Miami trip with fellow receivers last year, or the recent video that showed him in bed with a pizza and what appeared to be a brown cigarette, next to a woman with a credit card and a white powdery substance.
Giants co-owner John Mara said Sunday he was “tired of answering questions about Odell’s behavior.”
“I think too often he allows himself to be put in bad situations and needs to use better judgment,” Mara said.
Tisch on Monday sounded a little bit more conciliatory, referring to the video as “white noise” and citing his own experience in the filmmaking industry with employees engaged in behaviors that made the organization look bad.
“When too much becomes too much, I think everyone’s aware of it,” Tisch said. “I hope it doesn’t get to that point.”