Af­ter be­ing forced to apol­o­gize to team, Odell says he doesn’t re­gret speak­ing from heart on state of Gi­ants

New York Daily News - - SPORTS - BY PAT LEONARD

Pat Shur­mur thought he han­dled Odell Beck­ham con­tro­versy by hav­ing WR ad­dress the team, but now OBJ says he isn’t ac­tu­ally sorry.

Six days af­ter the Gi­ants had Odell Beck­ham Jr. apol­o­gize to his team­mates for his ESPN in­ter­view, Beck­ham be­gan Fri­day night's Episode Five of his “I AM MORE: OBJ” UN­IN­TER­RUPTED Face­book docu-se­ries with an un­usual choice of words.

“Bro, I'm sorry that I'm not gonna apol­o­gize from my heart,” Beck­ham said, with no ques­tion pre­ced­ing, to open a video that ex­ten­sively ad­dressed the in­ter­view fall­out. “I don't feel like you de­serve an apol­ogy for one, and I don't feel like it's nec­es­sary for me to apol­o­gize for how I feel.”

Beck­ham spent a large per­cent­age of this 11-minute episode of “I AM MORE: OBJ” en­ti­tled “THE DI­A­LOGUE” on the re­ac­tion to last week's in­ter­view with ESPN's Josina An­der­son and Lil Wayne, in which Beck­ham made crit­i­cal com­ments about Eli Man­ning, his team­mates and play­ing in New York.

He also ex­pressed op­ti­mism in Fri­day's video that the Gi­ants (1-5) “can pull it to­gether and still make a run.” He ad­mit­ted he's made mis­takes on the field, too, and said: “I am try­ing my very best to make sure I am do­ing my part and then some.”

He also said he's try­ing to fol­low in the foot­steps of LeBron James in be­ing a mean­ing­ful, dif­fer­ence-mak­ing, im­pact­ful voice. And he even ad­mit­ted he doesn't know how to do it yet.

The big­gest take­away for the Gi­ants, how­ever, is go­ing to be that Beck­ham is con­tin­u­ing to talk at least some­what de­fi­antly about his true feel­ings in an in­ter­view that an­gered vir­tu­ally every mean­ing­ful per­son in the or­ga­ni­za­tion.

“If I'm not al­lowed to put my foot down and say I'm tired of los­ing, that's tough for me to deal with, bro,” Beck­ham said later in the in­ter­view. “Like, I'm hav­ing a hard time deal­ing with that.”

The Gi­ants al­ready fined Beck­ham, read him the riot act, and had him apol­o­gize to the team for the ESPN in­ter­view. There is no telling how they'll act once they learned that Beck­ham, in re­sponse to be­ing rep­ri­manded, con­tin­ued to go on cam­era and dis­cuss his true feel­ings.

“If I feel bad for any­thing (af­ter the ESPN in­ter­view), I feel bad for one that peo­ple have to an­swer ques­tions about it and not know­ing my true in­ten­tion or where my heart is in the mes­sage,” Beck­ham said. “I feel bad that the mes­sage was -I won't even put it on some­one else, not taken wrongly -- but the mes­sage was per­ceived wrong.

“And as long as I'm here -which I signed a deal to be here for five years, not know­ing the fu­ture of the or­ga­ni­za­tion, not know­ing a new GM, a new coach, what di­rec­tion that they're go­ing to be go­ing in -- I signed it as an oath of loy­alty to New York, ya know?” Beck­ham said. “There's no place bet­ter to win than here. There's noth­ing more I want to do than bring cham­pi­onships to this place. And every year. (It's) not like yeah I want to win one or two. I want to win it for the next 10 years, if I'm play­ing foot­ball for the next 10 years. That's al­ways gonna be my men­tal­ity.

That's where Beck­ham con­tin­ued: “If I'm not al­lowed to put my foot down and say I'm tired of los­ing, that's tough for me to deal with, bro. Like, I'm hav­ing a hard time deal­ing with that.”

Beck­ham went on to stress how much he worked to get back healthy for this sea­son.

“I think a thing peo­ple for­get, so I lost my en­tire sea­son last year and didn't know if I would ever be able to be the same again,” Beck­ham said. “And I worked and I busted my ass. Every sin­gle day I got up and I went and worked out, whether I'm do­ing 10 hours of re­hab.

“Like I re­ally went hard this off­sea­son to re­pair my­self — mind body and soul — and put me back to­gether, to be able to come here and do what? Do the same thing that I was just do­ing? No,” OBJ added. “I worked way too hard to just even be able to play a foot­ball again. I'm not gonna be OK with be­ing medi­ocre. I'm not gonna be OK with be­ing av­er­age.”

Beck­ham said of the ESPN in­ter­view: “I felt like is was sup­posed to be a safe space and all th­ese things, and look, the things that I said, could they have been -- could they ap­proach a bet­ter or dif­fer­ent way? Could they have been han­dled a dif­fer­ent way?

“I think when you look back on any­thing and there's things that are con­flict­ing or things that get mixed up, you al­ways look back and be like it could have been han­dled a dif­fer­ent way,” he con­tin­ued. “I know it may have came off how­ever it came off, but my mes­sage was to be noth­ing more than en­cour­ag­ing, ev­ery­body to be their very best, to pick it up even more than you have, to ded­i­cate and sac­ri­fice more than you ever have.

“And if any­thing could be taken from this mes­sage, to me in my eyes is that I ac­tu­ally care. I re­ally just deep down and to my core, my soul, care about what I'm do­ing.”

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