EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (CBSNewYork/AP) — Another loss. Another day talking about Odell Beckham Jr.
It’s getting to be a habit for New York Giants rookie head coach Ben McAdoo.
While McAdoo spent some time talking Tuesday about the Giants’ play in the wake of their 24-10 loss to the Minnesota Vikings on Monday night, he probably spent much more time than he would have liked discussing Beckham and another of his emotional in-game outbursts.
After his opening statement, McAdoo had to answer 11 of the next 12 questions about Beckham, his unsportsmanlike conduct penalty against the Vikings, the receiver saying Tuesday he was not having fun playing football, his claims the officials were targeting him, just to name a few.
It was similar to last week after the loss to Washington. Beckham didn’t get a 15-yard penalty in that game, but he had several meltdowns on the sideline during the game.
McAdoo again had to talk about his best playmaker, but not for the plays he was making.
The Giants had no media availability on Tuesday, but Beckham became the focal point in an interview with ESPN’s Anita Marks.
“Football is my sanctuary,” Beckham told her. “It’s where I go to escape. It’s where I’m most happy. I’m not having fun anymore.”
McAdoo understood what his receiver was saying. He doesn’t like losing and he certainly doesn’t like being held to three catches for a career-low 23 yards.
“When we execute better, spread the ball around and everyone gets their opportunities, we’re going to have some fun,” McAdoo said when asked about Beckham’s comment.
“Until we execute better, hang onto the football and eliminate the penalties from our play, no one is going to be having any fun.”
Beckham didn’t have much fun against the Vikings. Eli Manning did not throw a pass his way until the second quarter. When he caught a short one later in the quarter, Vikings cornerback Xavier Rhodes seemed to hit him late out of bounds.
Beckham complained to the official and then said something to Rhodes.
A flag came out and Beckham was hit with an unsportsmanlike penalty, costing the Giants 15 yards.
McAdoo said that he thought there would have been offsetting penalties.
“Every game is officiated differently,” McAdoo said. “Not all crews officiate games the same way. You have scouting reports on officials just like you do on opponents. We need to understand how the games are going to be officiated. You usually find out pretty early.”
McAdoo said he was not aware whether the Giants planned to complain to the league about either the play or Beckham’s allegations that he was being targeted by the officials.
Beckham and Rhodes were matched against each other several times in the game and had some tiffs.
Beckham said it’s tough “to understand that, for a 23-year-old who has been blessed with a lot. God has gifted me an amazing amount of ability. … It seems like it’s all working against you.”
After listening to audio of the comments during his show Tuesday, WFAN’s Mike Francesa ripped into Beckham.
“Folks, what you just heard is everything that is wrong,” he said. “First of all, he should never talk about himself like that. He hasn’t accomplished enough yet to do that. Yes, he’s had good numbers. His team has been a loser since he’s been here. And it’s still about winning. It’s not about stats.
“Yes, he’s gifted, but let other people say that.
“And then this whole victim deal, where he’s being singled out. Look at the play last night. Go look at what happened. He overreacted to what was a fair hit. You’re playing two-hand touch now? They’re not allowed to touch you? The reason he went off on a rage is because he was already over on the sideline earlier in the game complaining that he hadn’t gotten the ball yet.”
McAdoo insisted those were not distractions to his team. He added that Beckham is a hard-working athlete who wants nothing more than to help his team win. He also said he speaks with Beckham every day, but refused to say what they talk about.
The coach took the blame for Manning not throwing his way in the opening 22 minutes.
“He’s one heck of a player that wants the football,” McAdoo said.
However, Beckham needs to avoid getting any penalties that push his team back 15 yards.
Manning said Beckham has to be aware that he is a focal point on the field for everyone.
“People are looking for him and he’s got to be smart,” Manning said. “He can’t afford to do anything that they’re going to call. He’s brought that on himself, so he’s got to be aware of that.”
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