Odell Beckham Jr. frustrated, says he's 'not having fun anymore'

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Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Odell Beckham Jr. is frustrated with the increased amount of attention on his behavior during games and said he is "not having fun anymore" playing football.

The Giants star wide receiver reflected on his image and on his role in New York's offense during an interview with ESPN's Anita Marks on Tuesday, less than 24 hours after a disappointing performance in a nationally televised loss to the Minnesota Vikings.

"Football is my sanctuary," Beckham told Marks. "It's where I go to escape. It's where I'm most happy. I'm not having fun anymore."

Beckham's comments came on the heels of his latest on-field meltdown Monday, when he was flagged for a taunting penalty and repeatedly clashed with Minnesota's Xavier Rhodes. Beckham had been exchanging verbal barbs with Rhodes for several plays before when the Vikings cornerback hit him out of bounds after a 4-yard catch.

Referee Brad Allen's crew did not penalize Rhodes for the late hit, but Beckham was penalized for taunting when he charged and bumped Rhodes.

Giants coach Ben McAdoo was asked Tuesday during a conference call about Beckham's comment about not having fun in his current role.

"I have no response," McAdoo said.

The exchange with Rhodes came one week after Beckham's latest confrontation with Josh Norman, the outspoken Washington Redskins cornerback who famously feuded with Beckham last season as a member of the Carolina Panthers.

Beckham cited last season's matchup with Norman in his interview with Marks, saying that it "tarnished" his image and blaming the media for continuing to focus on his on-field conduct. He also said that the intense coverage of his latest matchup with Norman and the Redskins was circulated on social media, causing other Giants players to see it and focus on their teammate's mental state.

A two-time Pro Bowler, Beckham had a career-worst 23 receiving yards on just three catches Monday. The Giants have targeted Beckham in the first quarter just eight times over their first four games, according to ESPN Stats & Information.

When asked about potentially getting more involved in making offensive adjustments on the sideline, Beckham expressed more frustration to Marks.

"What I'm communicating, we're not doing," he said. "I'm not getting the opportunities to contribute, and that's frustrating to me."

Beckham had a long conversation with Giants general manager Jerry Reese in the locker room after Monday's game, according to ESPN Giants reporter Jordan Raanan.

McAdoo said last week that his star receiver needed to become less of a distraction to himself and his teammates, but Monday night's actions apparently didn't fall into that category.

"It was not a distraction," McAdoo said. "Two competitive players playing the game."

Giants quarterback Eli Manning said Monday, however, that Beckham has to "be aware" of other team's attempts to rattle him.

"People are looking for him," Manning said. "He's got to play smart, and he can't afford to do anything there. They're going to call him. He's brought that on himself, and he's got to realize that."

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