Odell Beckham Jr. played his last game for the Giants on Dec. 2, 2018. He hasn’t gotten over them, and they haven’t gotten over him.
It was not an amicable divorce.
“I never thought I would play for another team besides the Giants,” Beckham said this week on the “All Things Covered” podcast with Patrick Peterson and Bryant McFadden, via the New York Post. “I never wanted to win a championship for anybody more than the Giants, bro. It was just such a legendary place. I was very proud to be a part of that organization.”
So who does the receiver blame for his trade to the Browns? He doesn’t name former coach Pat Shurmur and current General Manager Dave Gettleman, but it’s obvious he points a finger — one in particular — at them.
“It just felt like I was coming to the end of a road and I was pushing for something that wasn’t tangible. And that was where it all went haywire,” Beckham said. “We got a new coach in there, and I feel like that’s a situation I can be honest now, because people have come out, like anonymous coaches, when we know who it really was.
“I felt betrayed in a sense that this coach tried to turn me against my brothers and my coaches and was telling the young guys to stay away from me because I’m not a good person or not a good team [player] or role model or this and that.”
Beckham had his best seasons in New York, making the Pro Bowl in each of his first three seasons. The team fined him in October 2018 after he criticized Shurmur and Eli Manning in an ESPN interview, and five months later, Beckham was in Cleveland.
“I know I got a lot of s— when I talked bad on Eli and I never once said a bad thing. If anything, I just speak the truth,” Beckham said on the podcast. “The only thing I can look back on and be like, ‘Man, I regret saying that’ is saying he’s not the same player, even though it’s the truth.”
The Giants didn’t do enough with the talent they had or building around the talent they had, according to Beckham. The team had only one winning season and a 31-49 record overall in Beckham’s tenure.
“I will tell you where I ran into trouble,” Beckham said. “It was when I felt like we had the pieces. We know that Eli [was] a little older. I felt like they never put people around Eli. I’ve been here now. I’ve given you two seasons. I’ve shown you what I’m capable of. I can hoop.
“And I felt like they never put people around Eli. It bothered me because I felt like they never built around him. And we just kept drafting, we were drafting not like building an organization. . . . You know, we were just never good. I ran into that problem, bro, when I felt like they weren’t growing and evolving as an organization. Like, I wasn’t winning. I hated losing that bad. Great, I was having great seasons. But I hated losing. I hated it. Hated it.”