Odell Beckham, of course, spoke to the media on Thursday about the storm of controversy that has surrounded him lately. Rather than try to analyze or spin what the New York Giants wide receiver said, let’s just present the most important of his remarks here.
Judge his responses for yourself.
On how he deals with the attention from the past couple of weeks ...
“You don’t. You just keep going. Keep it moving. There’s always going to be bumps in the road. There’s always going to be this and that, adversity. You just overcome it. It’s what I’ve done all my life. Tattoo on my arm says, ‘The ultimate measurement of a man is not where he stands at moments that come at a convenience but where he stands at times of challenging controversy.’ It’s true. It’s not where you stand when it’s all good and everything is going your way. It’s where you stand when your back is against the wall. You just keep pushing and keep fighting.”
On whether he has to change his behavior on the field ...
“I think I just have to control what I can control. I can control myself. I can’t control anything else but what I do. I definitely know I can do a better job at that. The thing that kills me is that I remember when I was a kid. I remember when I looked up to someone and watched them, emulated them. What I’m doing is not something I would want a 6-year-old boy to be out there and learn from. Honestly, as funny as it sounds, that’s really all I care about. Just being able to have that ability to be a blessing to someone else. To be an inspiration. That’s a lot of power. That’s very powerful to me. It feeds my soul. I would never, again, want to set a bad example for any kids or anything like that. I’m just doing the best to be me.”
On whether teams beating him cowardly ...
“I don’t know what you want to call it. I talked to coach. It is what it is. You have to accept it. Accept the situation and know that that’s going to be the case. It’s like blood in the water. The shark smells the blood; he’s going to swim around it. Apparently there is blood in the water. You just keep swimming. Be fearless. I’m always going to go with coach. It’s tough to be in that situation but it is what it is. I would do the same, probably.”
On whether he blames teams for baiting him ...
“Absolutely not. I would probably do the same. I think it’s gotten to a point where I just want to compete. None of the extra stuff. I just want to compete. That never seems to be the case. You just keep smiling. It’ll be straight. It’ll all work itself out. We’ll start winning some games and help pick up this offense.”
On his comments about not having fun ...
“I’m always having fun, regardless of what happens. There’s times where things can be like that and there’s times where it’s always going to be what it is. It goes back to what I was saying. I would go out there and I would be playing. I’m in warmups and I would see a little kid. I would run up to him. It’s almost like he wants to shake my hand but there’s this. I remember when I was young and I met Mike Vick. It was such a great feeling for me to meet someone that I looked up to. Just keep that in mind. Just keep in mind that my little brother is watching. What example would I want to set for him. If you can do that and put that into perspective, even at a hard time like that, it’ll be alright.”
Does he think about being a role model?
“Since I hit the whip and little kids all across the world are doing the whip. I have adults come up to me and say my son tried to get his hair just like you. I tell them that I apologize for that. I didn’t tell them to do that. I do want to be something that someone can look up to. There’s kids out there that don’t have the opportunity to make it here. If I can give them some kind of hope to do whatever it is and chase their dream, that’s good enough for me. I’ve been gifted with a lot and in return a lot is expected. You just have to know that, and keep that in perspective.”
On whether he would do anything differently on Monday if he could go back ...
“Just know your situation. Like I said, there seems to be blood in the water and a shark is going to swim around it. Just know that that’s the case. Just go back to being the me, the guy that, I came out here and I love football. There’s so much outside stuff that goes into football. It takes away from what you came here to do sometimes. Sometimes you need to refocus. Sometimes you need things to happen that will bring you back. It’s always the tough times that make the great ones that much better. “