Mike McCarthy did not offer any public advice to Ben McAdoo for dealing with Odell Beckham Jr. The reason? He doesn’t think he needs any.
McCarthy, the Packers coach and a mentor to McAdoo from their time together in Green Bay, said on a conference call on Wednesday that he doesn’t think there is a major issue when it comes to the wide receiver.
“The first thing is anytime you’re outside looking in, perception and reality, there’s usually a big gap between that,” he said. “I think you have to be in tune with the fact that emotion is a big part of our game. He’s a tremendous young player and Ben is an excellent communicator, so, I think externally it’s not what it may seem internally.”
The problem may be that some of the internal stuff is leaking out. McAdoo last week referred to Beckham’s sideline display of frustration as a distraction, teammates Eli Manning and Victor Cruz have publicly called on Beckham to get his emotions under control. And Beckham himself told ESPN on Tuesday that he is no longer having fun playing football.
“What I’m communicating, we’re not doing,” Beckham told ESPN. “I’m not getting opportunities to contribute, and that’s frustrating to me.”
Part of that is because of the way defenses are covering him.
“Obviously he gets a lot of attention and rightfully so,” McCarthy said of the way defenses adjust their focus to Beckham. “You see the respect the first four opponents have for him just based on the way they’ve played him. He’s an excellent talent and he’s definitely a playmaker.”
He’s also become the topic of the week for any sports commentator with a microphone or Internet access this week. Everyone from his former coach Tom Coughlin to Brett Favre to Dez Bryant has weighed in on how Beckham’s emotions shape his play, whether it is good or bad for the Giants, and what might happen as the season goes along.
Despite all the apparent drama, McCarthy said he expects the Giants to be focused on winning and not whining when they face his Packers at Lambeau Field.
“The first thing you always expect with Ben, and it’s clearly evident from our time together, is his football team will be prepared,” McCarthy said. “He’s definitely a stickler for the details, has a tremendous work ethic, so we know that we’re going to see a very well-prepared football team come Sunday night.”