Eli Manning gives surprisingly strong response to Odell trade rumors
One of the worst kept secrets of the 2018 NFL offseason is that the New York Giants will trade their mercurial and freakishly talented wide receiver.
The other worst kept secret is that the Giants will most definitely not trade away Odell Beckham Jr.
Every day, a new report or rumor seems to surface from New York regarding Beckham’s future. One day, the Giants want at least two first-round draft picks for the star receiver. The next day, he’s off-limits. One day, reports surface that teams are circling the Giants and waiting to pounce on a deal for Beckham. The next day, the Giants are supposedly listening to those offers without taking any of them seriously.
Unsurprisingly, it’s been a tumultuous and emotionally draining period for Giants fans.
While new Giants coach Pat Shurmur, general manager David Gettleman and team owners John Mara and Steve Tisch have all played their hands close to the vest, so as not to unnecessarily give up any trade leverage, the next most important Giant has taken a decidedly more straightforward approach.
Speaking to reporters, longtime Giants star quarterback Eli Manning addressed the rumors swirling around Beckham, and he couldn’t have been much clearer.
“I never got too concerned with (the trade rumors). We all know the talent Odell has and what he brings (to) the field. I look forward to playing with him this year and for years to come,” Manning said Monday, per SNY’s Ralph Vacchiano.
“For years to come,” he added.
While those comments may seem like a standard platitude, Manning has always been noted for being a loyal company guy.
If the Giants really were planning on trading Beckham, it would’ve been far more likely for Manning to offer up an empty comment about how he can only focus about what’s happening on the field.
Of note, despite mentioning some nebulous future with Beckham, Eli also seemed painfully aware that he may not be a Giant for much longer.
“This league it’s one year at a time, and that’s kind of how it goes,” Manning said.
For any non-Giants fans, it’s been peculiar and enthralling to see one of the most stable and well-run franchises in the NFL devolve into a slightly more refined version of the Jets.
With players regressing across the board under former head coach Ben McAdoo, 2017 was a down year for the Giants. Though they were never really viewed as a serious contender, the Giants still drew plenty of national attention when the team unceremoniously benched Manning for Geno Smith.
Manning soon earned his spot back, but now Beckham has become the latest subject of the Giants drama. Despite otherworldly talent, Beckham has become known for his off-the-field behavior as much as for his prodigal receiving skills. Whether it’s tantrums on the sideline, punching a kicking net or very dubious social media videos, Beckham’s foibles are long and varied.
Considering he wants to be one of the highest-paid player in the NFL once his rookie contract expires, it’s fair for the Giants to wonder if Beckham will still be worth it when he’s making $80 million instead of $8 million.
Either way, the Giants leader and captain, Eli Manning, wants to play with Beckham for years. It’s just not abundantly clear if those years will take place in New York.
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