CLEVELAND — Several reporters and columnists have been reporting about the kind of teammate wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. was during his five years with the New York Giants since his mid-March trade to the Cleveland Browns.
Because of that speculation, Beckham Jr. is looking to change the narrative and let that be known in an Instagram post in the days following the conclusion of the Browns’ offseason program in Berea last Thursday.
“When it’s all said and done, they’re going to respect me,” Beckham Jr. posted.
In addition to earning respect, Beckham Jr. wants to do some redecorating at FirstEnergy Stadium.
Beckham Jr. wants to hang some banners at “The Home of the Browns,” the kind of reminders that are given to the Super Bowl Champion at the end of the season, and is focused on helping the Browns become the next version of the New England Patriots.
“Who wouldn’t aspire to be the Patriots?” Beckham Jr. said during mandatory minicamp. “Who wouldn’t want to be an 11-5, 12-4 team, win the division, go to the AFC Championship every single year, win your division, go to the championship, go to the Super Bowl?
“I don’t know why else you got in this game. I didn’t get in this game to get money or anything like that. I got in this game to be a champion. All my life, I’ve never really been a champion.”
Beckham Jr. has longed to be a part of a championship team since he first started competing in sports during his childhood in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.
“I want to win, I want to be a champion,” Beckham Jr. said. “Comments get taken like that, but who wouldn’t want to be like the Patriots? That’s just it. They’re the top team pretty much year in and year out. They’re going far and deep into the playoffs, I don’t know how many years it’s been, but they do it pretty much every year. That’s obviously the goal. That’s what you want to bring here. That’s the mentality I’ll always have.”
Over 59 regular-season games, including 56 starts, in his five years with the Giants, Beckham Jr. turned 622 targets into 390 receptions for 5,476 yards and 44 touchdowns. Beckham Jr. averaged 92.8 yards per game, including a league-best 108.8 during the 2014 season.
Beckham Jr. has put four 1,000-yard and three double-digit touchdown seasons on his resume since being selected with a first-round pick in the 2014 NFL Draft.
Last season, Beckham Jr. turned in a 77-catch, 1,052-yard, six-touchdown effort for the Giants.
Beckham Jr. was a three-time Pro Bowl selection (2014-2016) and two-time Second Team All-Pro honoree (2015-2016) during his five years with the Giants.
However, despite all of his individual successes, Beckham Jr. played in just one playoff game in his first five NFL seasons, and he would trade those statistics and accolades for team glory.
“This game is about winning,” Beckham Jr. said. “I know some of us get stuck up in numbers, but this game is about winning.
“I do see a lot of potential with this team, and not even just because I’m here. I really feel it, and I feel something in the air, something special that Cleveland hasn’t had for a while, and I’m happy to be a part of that. I hope that I can help do whatever I need to do to push that that way.”