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John Mara expects Odell Beckham Jr. back ‘stronger than ever’

Wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. of the New

Wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. of the New York Giants is attended to after being injured on a play in the fourth quarter against the Los Angeles Chargers at MetLife Stadium on Oct. 8, 2017, in East Rutherford, N.J. Credit: Mike Stobe

Giants president and co-owner John Mara is confident wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. will be ready to play next season despite undergoing ankle surgery earlier this month. Mara also said he didn’t think Beckham’s injury situation would interfere with any contract negotiations for the fourth-year wide receiver.

“I don’t think [the injury] will have any effect [on contract talks], because I think he’s going to make a full recovery,” Mara said Wednesday in his first public comments about Beckham since the injury. Beckham was hurt near the end of the Giants’ 27-22 loss to the Chargers Oct. 8. He underwent surgery to repair a fracture in his left ankle, which he had previously injured during the preseason.

Mara said he visited Beckham “in the hospital last week. He’s in a good place, and I think he’ll come back stronger than ever.”

Asked if he needed to see Beckham resume playing before deciding on a potential contract extension next year, Mara said, “I don’t think so, because I think our medical people feel pretty strongly that he’ll make a full recovery. And, knowing him, he will work so hard to get back. He has so much pride.”

Beckham is going into the final year of his rookie contract and is due to make $8.4 million in 2018. Mara has left open the possibility the Giants will reward Beckham with a new deal before the current contract expires.

Mara did express disappointment with Beckham’s behavior in a 27-24 loss to the Eagles in Week 3. After scoring a fourth-quarter touchdown, Beckham celebrated by imitating a dog urinating in the Eagles’ end zone. Mara met privately with Beckham in his office two days after the game.

“I was obviously disappointed with his behavior in Philadelphia,” Mara said. “I spoke to him about that. He heard me. Unfortunately, he got hurt after that. But he’s maturing. I think we all had hoped that the maturity would come a little faster than it has been, but I’ve spoken to him.”

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