New York Giants demanding at least two first-round picks for Odell Beckham Jr

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The Guardian
<span class="element-image__caption">Giants wideout <a class="link rapid-noclick-resp" href="/nfl/players/27540/" data-ylk="slk:Odell Beckham Jr">Odell Beckham Jr</a> could be on his way out of New York.</span> <span class="element-image__credit">Photograph: Icon Sportswire/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images</span>
Giants wideout Odell Beckham Jr could be on his way out of New York. Photograph: Icon Sportswire/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The New York Giants have maintained they are not actively seeking a trade partner for Odell Beckham Jr, insisting any discussions of a swap for the three-time Pro Bowl wide receiver have been initiated by rival teams and fall under due diligence.

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But that hasn’t stopped last year’s NFC East cellar-dwellers from setting a steep price for any suitor interested in Beckham’s services next season, according to a report by ESPN’s Adam Schefter: a minimum of two first-round draft picks.

The 25-year-old from Louisiana recorded at least 90 receptions, 1,300 yards and 10 touchdowns in each of his first three NFL seasons before missing 12 games with a broken left ankle in last year’s fourth campaign as the Giants slumped to the NFC’s worst record.

The price tag could be a non-starter for a mercurial wideout entering the fifth and final year of his rookie contracts, especially after a pair of deals awarded to receivers in Beckham’s draft class – the Kansas City Chiefs’ Sammy Watkins ($30m) and the Tampa Bay BuccaneersMike Evans ($50m) – have established a high-priced baseline for when the former first-round draft pick hits free agency in 2019.

Giants owner John Mara spoke out about his star receiver’s tumultuous year on Sunday at the NFL owners meetings in Orlando, expressing disappointment at the dissemination of a video that showed Beckham in bed with a woman, a pizza, what appeared to be a brown cigarette and white powder, though the timing of the video and its content is unclear.

“It’s too often he allows himself to be put in bad situations and uses bad judgment,” Mara said, adding that the video “wasn’t helpful. He knows what we expect of him and now it’s up to him. We certainly are not shopping him. Coming off 3-13 when we played as poorly as we did, I can’t say anyone is untouchable.”

On Tuesday, Mara elaborated: “He’s not on the block. Is that going to stop clubs from possibly calling us? No. But he’s not on the block. We’re not shopping him around.”

He added: “I want him to be a Giant. I can’t say it’s a 100% guarantee it will happen. Can’t say that about any player.”

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