Although it may not have been what many fans expected Big Blue to do with the 12th overall pick in this year’s draft, the newest Giant is in fact Odell Beckham Jr., wide receiver out of LSU.
While I would’ve really liked to see them continue to build on their still unstable offensive line, or bulk up their defensive line, there is no denying this kid is talented. So, instead of jumping the gun and ripping into this pick, I decided to take a look at why it makes sense.
Watch any of his highlight tapes; they are chock full of one-handed grabs and stellar routes. Not to mention the speed he has shown, both in games and at the combine. (He ran an unofficial 4.31 40-yard-dash).
He’s a dynamic receiver, who plays in a way that is very different from what any of the guys on the current roster have to offer. He ranked very high in both yards after the catch, and yards from the line of scrimmage; yet another token to his speed, showcasing his ability to run his routes and beat his defender on a consistent basis.
As an added bonus, Beckham has proven himself as both a punt and kick returner, although I would hope the team doesn’t plan to only use him on special teams, given the fact that they used such a high draft pick and already have players on the roster who can fill this role (See: Trindon Holliday).
With the loss of Hakeem Nicks this past offseason, there was most definitely a hole left in the receiving core. One of the many positions the Giants needed to fill in this draft was a wide receiver, although many people (myself included) thought they would scour the later rounds for a possible solution.
Beckham has history with some current members of the offense, as well. He comes to the NFL from LSU as a former teammate of Reuben Randle, the Giants’ second round pick in the 2012 Draft. He also attended the same high school as quarterback Eli Manning-Isidore Newman High School in New Orleans, Louisiana.
Sure, his size is a concern. At only 5’11, he is on the shorter side for his position, and with a 6’0 flat Victor Cruz and 5’8 Jerrel Jernigan already on the roster, there is no apparent need for another smaller guy. Beckham has shown an overwhelming desire to go up and compete for the ball in a way that is much bigger than his height gives him credit for.
But, in true New York Giants’ fashion, the war room decision was made based on the “best available” scheme. Beckham’s play appears to make up for his size in the eyes of Jerry Reese and the Giants. He must have been ranked well above both Zack Martin, the offensive tackle out of Notre Dame, and Aaron Donald, the defensive end out of Pitt, who were both still available when the Giants made their pick and were both speculated to have been on the Giants’ radar.
The only question I have left is whether this pick would have been different had Taylor Lewan or Eric Ebron still been on the board.
Alexis Celluro | Featured Columnist