Odell Beckham Jr. is anxious to get a new contract, but the Giants are smart to hold off a while to see just how the talented receiver recovers from injury.
Odell Beckham Jr. clearly wants a new, big contract from the New York Giants. The team isn’t any rush to re-sign their talented receiver, though. John Mara and company are doing the right thing by putting Beckham Jr. on their timeline.
That isn’t to say the Giants don’t want to keep Beckham Jr. for the long haul. Mara openly admits the team wants to sign Beckham Jr. to a new deal. The Giants simply aren’t willing to let Beckham Jr. and his representatives speed up their timeline.
There are a couple of good reasons this makes sense for the Giants. First, delaying the talks will give them the chance to see how the electric wideout is recovering from his ankle injury. There’s no reason to believe he can’t return and be the same player he once was, but there’s always a chance that injury will rob a player of some of his explosion.
If Beckham Jr. loses a step due to his ankle break then he could lose a lot of his big play ability. That would obviously depress his market value. The Giants aren’t going to pay Beckham Jr. a massive amount of cash to be a possession receiver.
Delaying talks with Beckham Jr. also is a strong negotiating tactic from general manager Dave Gettleman and company. They understand that Beckham Jr. is going to ask to become the highest paid non-quarterback in the NFL. The Giants, obviously, would like to sign him to a slightly smaller contract. If they rush to the negotiating table now they’ll seem desperate to the player and his agent. That could cost the Giants millions of extra dollars in a new contract.
The danger to the Giants’ strategy is that Beckham Jr. might elect to hold out. The former LSU star did participate in voluntary workouts with the new coaching staff as an act of good faith ahead of negotiations. If he doesn’t have a new deal by the time training camp arrives he could become a lot less amenable. It wouldn’t surprise anyone to see Beckham Jr. use a holdout to bring the Giants to the negotiating table.
In the end, you can expect talks between the Giants and Beckham Jr. to be long and drawn out. Gettleman has a reputation for being one of the toughest general managers in the league to negotiate with. Beckham Jr. understandably wants to get paid like a superstar. Expect the two sides to find some common ground eventually, but it may be a while. That’s why the Giants are smart to keep as much leverage as they can for the time being.