Odell Beckham Jr. arrived at the Quest Diagnostics Training Center on Wednesday for the start of training camp, as he had promised he would. Now, the question is how much the wide receiver, looking for a rich long-term contract and coming back from an injury, will do once practice begins on Thursday afternoon.
“I anticipate him to be ready to go,” head coach Pat Shurmur said on Wednesday. “As we go forward, he’s coming back from injury and so we’re going to continue to be smart about how much we give him starting out.”
Beckham attended many of the spring workouts, including mandatory mini-camp, but did little beyond stretching and some individual work.
Shurmur said at this point he would have “no reservation” about putting Beckham into live drills, but added “we’re going to continue to be smart with his training.”
Shurmur deflected questions about Beckham’s contract.
“We don’t talk about contracts. Again, the focus for me is to keep the players thinking about football. That’s not really a question for me at this point,” he said. “I would say you can ask Dave (Gettleman), but my guess is he’ll give you the same answer.”
Here are more takeaways from Shurmur’s Wednesday session with the media.
On the first few days of camp
“I think what’s important is that we’ve got to go game speed. Obviously without the pads, there’s a little less banging. The training sessions, the practices, will look a lot like they do in the spring. Once you put the pads on, though, we still don’t go to the ground and we’re smart about what we do. It’s just a little bit more intense for the guys in the front seven and a little bit more competitive on the edges because now we can bump and run and cover in a much more tight fashion. We’re just going to play football… Make it look like football.”
On his message to the team
“Well, my message is really for them, but I think the important thing is for us to focus on playing football, focus on getting better. I told the rookies this, but when we put a 90-man roster together, the goal is for them to make our team or somebody else’s. There’s 31 other teams watching what we do, and it’ll be a great honor to our roster if all 90 guys make a roster. I think that’s their challenge, to get better everyday and use the reps they get to the best of their ability and let the chips fall where they may.”
On the national anthem issue
“Yeah, we’re going to talk about that as a team. Again, I want to keep the focus on playing football. There’s going to be constant conversation with regard to that. I talked in the spring about my feelings with regard to the anthem – those have not changed. We’ll just keep the focus on football.”
On rookie running back Saquon Barkley
“Well, he’s very smart; he gets ‘it’ in a lot of ways and I think that’s a great place to start. He’s super talented, and the third part that’s stuck out to me is that he embraces work. The mind is always looking for a way out and he doesn’t. He’s here, he’s working, he’s training on all the things we can train on in the sessions. Now it’s going to get a little bit more physical and I assume he’ll embrace that as well.”
On this week’s rookie practices
“They get a chance to get the first, second, and third installment before the veterans get here. That is very helpful for the rookies. Then the selected vets that didn’t get a bunch of work in the spring, that kind of gets them up to speed, so that’s the idea.”
On why Tom Quinn is back
“Tom was in town and available and is back assisting us. T-Mac (Thomas McGaughey) had some health issues, so Tom is here to assist in anyway possible. Outstanding coach and was in town, so he’s here. So T-Mac is running things and will have two assistants.” [Full story]