Giants WR Odell Beckham, Jr. believes he will become the highest paid player in the league, he said in a video on UNINTERRUPTED.
"I believe that I will be hopefully not just the highest-paid receiver in the league, but the highest paid, period," he said.
Beckham sat down for the UNINTERRUPTED video on Monday to discuss his football and his career.
"It's like the elephant in the room, and you don't want to talk about it," he said. "But I've gotten to the point in my life where I'm like, 'No, I'm going to ... there's no need to not talk about it."
"For or five years ago when I was in college I told my college coach that I fear the day when they make football not what I love to do so much anymore but my job," he said. Now it's slowly starting to become my job."
Giants owner John Mara gave Beckham a vote of confidence as the team entered training camp.
"Listen, he's as exciting a player as we have had on this team in my lifetime, and he brings a lot of energy, a lot of big plays to us," Mara told Steve Serby of the NY Post. "And when you cut through everything else, he actually is a really good kid. He does a lot of wonderful things off the field that people don't know about. He needs to work on controlling his emotions a little bit more. But when he is on the field, the other teams have to pay attention to him."
Of course Odell Beckham wants to be the highest paid player in the NFL. Who doesn't?
That doesn't mean there's any realistic chance that it will happen.
Never mind whether or not he deserves it - though I would argue it's hard to give any non-quarterback that title (and money). This isn't about what he deserves, just what is realistic.
The Giants would like to sign Beckham to a long-term contract. They know it's going to be lucrative, too, with a potential total value over $100 million. And they don't mind. Or at least they're not blinking at the thought of that crazy amount.
But the Giants will start negotiations from this base of knowledge: Beckham is owed $8.459 million next season in the final year of his rookie contract. Then the Giants can slap the franchise tag on him in 2019 for about $17 million too. They could even do it again in 2020 if they wanted; the price would jump to a little more than $20 million.
That means they can control him for three years, up until he turns 28 years old, for a total of $45 million that's only guaranteed one year at a time. Why then, would they jump to, say, $25.5 million per season - or $127.5 million over the five-year deal he likely wants -- which would give him the current highest average in the league? And why would they guarantee him $60 million, which would also be the NFL's highest?
Why would the Giants do that when they control his rights for much less? Why would they do that when they have all the leverage? Yes, Beckham can holdout, but there's really nothing else he can do. And that's just not how negotiations work.
The Giants will undoubtedly make Beckham a very, very rich man - probably even in the relatively near future. They will likely be generous to be fair and to keep him happy. He may even end up with one of the biggest contracts any receiver has ever had.
But there's only so far they'll be willing to go, especially considering their star-crossed history with receivers. Look at the injuries that stalled the careers of Steve Smith, Hakeem Nicks, Mario Manningham and Victor Cruz. Beckham isn't immune to the risks of a position where almost everything is based on quick cuts and speed.
Still, he will get paid. But this "highest paid player in the NFL" talk is unnecessary nonsense. There's no indication the Giants are going to play hardball with him. They know what he's going to cost. But they're not going to do anything crazy, either - not when they hold all the cards.