Wide receivers are different and they are different for a reason. They are the only athletes in professional sports where their success is based almost entirely on someone else’s performance.
If you play baseball you always get to hit or pitch for yourself, in basketball you are the one taking the shot. In football there is one position, where if someone else is awful, you can’t be successful. That is the wide receiver position. That’s why when we talk about histrionic players or guys who are showy or emotional it tends to be wide receivers. They are in essence helpless without someone else doing there job well.
It’s interesting when you look at the difference between wideouts and corners because they are both some of the most extravagant and outspoken types of athletes in sport, but very differently. Guys like Odell and Terrell Owens are showy, cornerbacks like Sanders and Sherman tend to be defiant and are reliant on no one but themselves. Some of the best corners don’t even go to the defensive huddle. The positions they play lead to those personalities.
If you just look at Odell, he’s incredibly emotional. People are going to ask for something that just can’t be done. ‘I want him to be great but he needs to keep his emotions in check’. I’m afraid that player doesn’t exist. It is his emotions that drive him and make him the most explosive player in the league. You want to know who’s benefitted more than anyone in the world? Eli Manning.
The year before Odell got to New York, Eli was about to play himself out of town. 18 touchdowns and 27 picks?!?! He was the worst quarterback in football that year. Then they draft this wide receiver out of LSU and Eli’s entire life changed. 65 touchdowns and 28 picks in two seasons. Eli might of won two Super bowl’s but he is now a different player because he got Odell Beckham. A guy who is one of the top three wideouts in the game and who became a worldwide star in a moment. ‘The catch’. He’s handled it better than most but he is still fiery and emotional which is what some teams target.
What the young man needs is for his quarterback to have his back unconditionally. He needs Eli to be shown a video of Odell committing a crime and his reaction be ‘doesn’t look like him to me, in fact, he was at my house. I’m his alibi’. What you don’t want is for Eli to throw him right under the bus after a game that the Giants didn’t lose because Odell got a taunting penalty. They lost because on every third down the quarterback play just wasn’t there.
Odell has changed his career and he needs to realise that and give the young man more credit.