After trip to Miami, allegations he punched hole at Lambeau, Giants GM speaks with Odell Beckham Jr.
GREEN BAY — New York Giants general manager Jerry Reese has told star receiver Odell Beckham Jr. that he needs to look at some of his antics on and off the field and be more responsible.
Beckham has been under the microscope for the past week after taking a one-day trip to Miami with some fellow receivers after the regular-season finale with a wild-card playoff game at Green Bay less than a week ago.
Beckham dropped a career-high three passes in the Giants 38-13 loss to the Packers on Sunday, January 8th, and more controversy followed: It was alleged that he punched a hole in a wall outside the Giants’ locker room at Lambeau Field.
He was not in the locker room at the Giants’ headquarters Monday to answer questions.
Coach Ben McAdoo said he became aware of the hole Monday, but he did not say who did it, adding he takes responsibility.
Reese said the Giants are investigating any potential vandalism and they would hold the appropriate party responsible for the damage.
He did not identify any suspects, but said he had a heart-to-heart talk Monday with Beckham, who was voted second team All-Pro after catching 101 passes this season for 1,367 yards and 10 touchdowns.
Reese has an outstanding relationship with Beckham, whose emotional play and passion annoys opponents and gets him into some ugly situations, highlighted by his run-in with Josh Norman in a game against Carolina in December 2015. He was suspended for a game by the NFL for being flagged for three personal fouls.
“I see a guy who needs to think about some of the things he does,” Reese said. “Everyone knows he’s a gifted player, but there’s some things he’s done that he needs to look in the mirror and be honest with himself about it. I think he’ll do that. We’ll help him with that, but he has to help himself.”
Beckham was fined numerous times by the league this season, including more than $72,000 in the first four games of 2016, with the biggest chunk a $36,000 penalty for an illegal hit on Saints safety Kenny Vaccaro.
“We’ve all grown at different times in our lives, and it’s time for him to grow,” Reese said. “He’s been here for three years now, and I think he’ll do that. He’s a little bit of a lightning rod because of the things he does on and off the football field. He’s gotta be responsible. I believe he understands that he has a responsibility being one of the faces of this franchise, and that he’ll accept that responsibility.”
McAdoo had no complaints about how Beckham practiced last week, and he felt Beckham played with tremendous effort on Sunday. He said it was possible the receiver might have been pressing in dropping a touchdown pass and believes he will learn from it.
When asked if Beckham might have hurt his hand putting a hole in the wall, McAdoo said he had already answered a question on that topic.
“I don’t condone putting holes in the wall,” McAdoo said of the team’s response to the issue. He said he had a conversation with Beckham about the hole on Monday.
“The team takes full responsibility, I take full responsibility,” McAdoo said. “That’s no way to carry yourself after a ball game. Let’s move on.”
As far as the drops, McAdoo said Beckham will deal with them.
“That’s something that is going to stick with him for a long time,” said the rookie coach who led the Giants to an 11-5 record and their first playoff berth since 2011. “He’ll learn from it. He’ll grow from it. He’ll bounce back.”
Eli Manning has no concerns about Beckham.
“I think Odell is passionate. He’s passionate and he wants to win,” the Giants quarterback said. “This was important for him. He wanted to go out there and have the best game of his career. Maybe he put too much pressure on himself, and emphasis. Unfortunately, going to the playoffs is different.”
A Packers spokesman said the team would not comment on any questions related to the hole in the wall.
The NFL did not immediately respond to an email from The Associated Press asking whether it was looking into the damage to the wall, and whether Beckham would be disciplined or have to pay for the damage if he was responsible.