INDIANAPOLIS - Odell Beckham probably knows he's not likely to end up as the highest-paid player in football. Now, his revised goal is reportedly to be the first non-quarterback to get a deal worth an average of $20 million per year.
It's a hefty price, to be sure. But it's one GM Dave Gettleman wouldn't rule out being the price the Giants eventually decide to pay.
"This is America. It's a great place," Gettleman said, when asked about Beckham's hypothetical contract demand. "Anything's possible."
That's true, but so far only one player in Giants history has gotten a contract worth more than $20 million annually - quarterback Eli Manning, who signed a four-year, $84 million contract extension in 2015 that gave him a deal with an annual value of a little more than $22 million. Only two other Giants come close - Jason Pierre-Paul at $17.5 million and Olivier Vernon at $17 million.
The highest-paid receiver in the NFL is Pittsburgh's Antonio Brown, whose deal averages $17 million per year.
Beckham's argument for topping that will surely be that he's not only a transcendent talent who has been by far the Giants' best player, but he's also one of the most popular and marketable players in the league. Gettleman refused to get into contract specifics, but he did say in general that when he considers a player's value there's only one criteria that matters to him.
"For me, the biggest impact is whether he helps us win," Gettleman said. "I'm not in marketing. I'm on the football side of the building. And at the end of the day if we don't win, I get fired, OK? So what you do is you pay a player what his value is. That's what you do."
Before the Giants decide if Beckham's value is indeed historic, there are some things they want to see from Beckham first. As both Gettleman and new coach Pat Shurmur have said, they want to see a change in Beckham's behavior. They also want to make sure he's fully recovered from the ankle surgery and the serious injury he suffered last year.
So far, the Giants' reports on their top receiver seem incomplete. He's doing most of his rehab in Los Angeles, Gettleman said, but he's apparently come by the Giants' facility for checkups.
"To my knowledge he's making great progress," Shurmur said, though he added he wasn't sure if Beckham would be ready to take the field with his teammates this spring.
What about this summer? That is up in the air too, especially after Beckham recently indicated on Twitter that he plans to play "0" preseason snaps (and then he snapped at the media for overblowing his short Tweet). Shurmur dismissed that saying they haven't discussed it yet. And Gettleman was equally unconcerned.
"Let me tell you something: Social media's evil," Gettleman said. "He's a big boy. You got to figure it out. I'm not losing sleep over that."