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Can Odell Beckham Jr. repeat his rookie season for the Giants?


Tom Coughlin, Giants head coach, spoke with media after training camp began on July 31, 2015 at the Quest Diagnostics Training Center in East Rutherford, New Jersey. (Credit: Newsday / Tim Nwachukwu)

Odell Beckham Jr. is trying to make history.

"Hopefully I can get Rookie of the Week the first week or something like that," the Giants' second-year receiver said before the start of Friday's training camp practice.

Wait, Beckham is no longer a rookie. Right?

"Eli [Manning] tells me I'm a rookie all the time still," Beckham said of the tradition that first-year players retain that label until the fourth game of their second season. "You just have to take that and keep going every single day. Try and inspire somebody."

No one would blame Beckham for wanting to cling to his rookie status a little longer. He enjoyed one of the most dynamic introductions to the NFL any player has ever had, earning Rookie of the Year, a trip to the Pro Bowl and a level of celebrity few even dream about. Now, though, comes the encore.

Beckham is hoping to join "The Godfather Part II" and "The Empire Strikes Back" as the rare sequel that surpasses the original.

"Just go out and do the same things that you did last year," he said of trying to top 2014. "You pray and hope for the same results, and that's where you leave it at, you know."

Manning said Beckham doesn't have to worry about carrying the offense or doing anything special.

"Just do his job," Manning said when asked what Beckham can do to impress him in his second season. "That's all we can expect him to do. Go out there, run the routes he's supposed to run. Hopefully we can get him completions. He doesn't have to try to do anything more than what his responsibilities are."

Still, Manning is jazzed about the possibility of having Beckham available for a full season after he missed four games at the start of 2014 with hamstring problems.

Beckham also hedged a bit when asked if he is 100 percent healthy heading into this camp, saying he can't recall a time when he was at optimal strength and fitness. He also didn't commit to being a full participant in Friday's practice. Tom Coughlin said Beckham would be managed throughout the summer after missing most of the spring with another hamstring issue.

That hasn't stopped the Giants from being optimistic, though.

"I'm just excited to get him back on the field, continue to work with him, see how he can grow within the offense," Manning said. "Can he get better and get more advanced within the offense?"

The Giants hope so.

And as for the rookie thing, well, Beckham will just have to take it for a few more weeks.

"It's always nice to have [Eli] clowning around and messing with you, and it's all love," Beckham said. "Whenever he jokes with you, it's just all out of love and that's what we do with each other."

By definition, no one has ever won Rookie of the Year award in back-to-back seasons. But if anyone can, it just might be Beckham.

New York Sports