clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Odell Beckham: 'Things are just different now'

New, comments

Odell Beckham knows things have changed with his record-breaking rookie season. Now the trick is adjusting to it.

Don McPeak-USA TODAY Sports

New York Giants wide receiver phenom Odell Beckham Jr. recently sat down with Paul Schwartz of the New York Post to talk about how "The Catch" has changed his life.

And it has.

Really, how could something as unbelievable as that catch, made on national television against one of the Giants' most bitter rivals, not change his life?

At the start of the season, Beckham was just another rookie. Largely ignored, except for a constant barrage of questions to head coach Tom Coughlin about when the injured receiver would finally get on the field.

"People thought I was some pretty boy that didn't want to play ... like I was a show pony.''

Beckham said, of the seemingly interminable time he spent getting his injured hamstring healthy.

Then he got on the field and people began to take notice, particularly defenses, as Beckham's blend of speed, quickness, physicality, and precision, quickly made him Eli Manning's No. 1 target. When the rookie had a seven-catch, 108-yard performance against Richard Sherman and the Seattle Seahawks' "Legion of Boom", the conversation shifted from "This kid is pretty good" to "Just how good can this kid be?"

Then 'The Catch' happened, and Odell Beckham was suddenly looking at stardom in the rearview mirror as he rocketed all the way to stardom.

Former receiver and long-time commentator Cris Collinsworth exclaimed "This is sick! ... This might be the greatest catch I've ever seen!" right on the spot.

Perhaps the greatest athlete in the world tweeted:

Suddenly everyone wanted a piece of Beckham, and the accolades started rolling in. Dining with LeBron James, voted Offensive Rookie of The Year, voted to the Madden cover, winning the ESPY for Play of The Year, posing in the ESPN Body Issue... Nobody would have believed that that was what awaited Beckham when they were fuming over the failure to draft Zack Martin or Aaron Donald.

But just a couple weeks after his 22nd birthday, Beckham had fame and celebrity thrust upon him like few can ever imagine.

"It’s not the same. Things are just different now. I can’t do all the things that I used to be able to do. Or it’s not that I can’t do ’em, it’s that they don’t go unnoticed any more.

It’s just a lot more on you.

I wouldn't say it's a weight, I would just say sometimes it's a lot to deal with. A lot more than people would imagine. They think it's ... it's just a lot to do, what I'm going through right now and what I'm doing right now. It just takes a lot of mental strength to be able to endure all of this.''

But while Beckham embraced the trappings of his sudden celebrity, adjusting to the weight of the spotlight has been a challenge for the young man.

"It’s a mixed blessing. I think all blessings are mixed in a way. It’s a ‘you give something to get something’ sort of thing. It’s definitely great, I wouldn’t trade it for the world, but it’s just that sometimes it gets to be a little much. "It gets tough sometimes, but that’s why you got to surround yourself with a positive group of people and people who are there for you and just want to see nothing but the best for you."

But while Beckham doesn't want that one play to define him, he wouldn't trade it either.

"No, I don’t think I ever want to take away that moment from my life, but it’s just unfortunate sometimes that’s all that you’re remembered for. But, I mean, it’s better than being not remembered. Every day, there’s always something I say I know I can do better, or I will do better at it."