As Giants players get ready for the Pro Bowl, Eli Manning had a message for Odell Beckham Jr., who is serving as a player-captain alongside Aaron Donald of the Rams for Team Rice.
“I told Odell: I said “Odell hey, I know you’re captain, don’t feel any pressure to draft me. But if you don’t draft me, don’t expect to catch any balls next year. No pressure at all.” I left it at that, and I think he’ll make an educated decision at the draft.”
It seems the message got through loud and clear, as Manning was selected as the number two overall pick in the 2016 Pro Bowl draft for Team Rice. Michael Irvin, who is serving as a Pro Bowl legend captain opposite fellow Hall of Famer Jerry Rice, selected QB Russell Wilson with the first overall pick.
Fans are certainly hoping that Manning and Beckham Jr.’s chemistry will lead to some exciting plays. During last year’s Pro Bowl Beckham Jr. put on a show, dazzling with one-handed grabs and tough contested catches to the tune of 89 receiving yards. Manning will undoubtedly take a few deep shots to Beckham to try and get them both a touchdown or two.
Manning also provided his first comments since Ben McAdoo took over as head coach, discussing how he thinks he’ll do in his first season replacing Tom Coughlin.
“I think Coach McAdoo will do a great job. I think he really does a wonderful job of holding court in the offensive meetings and getting his points across. I think he’ll continue to do a great job with the whole team. I’m excited for that. I think he’s ready and he’ll have a great staff of coaches. I think we’re close. I think we have some pieces in place that I’m excited about. I know we always need some new people, some areas where we need some help. I think the Giants are always committed to doing whatever it takes to get the right people and to get back to winning games and making playoffs and having that championship caliber squad.”
It comes as no surprise that McAdoo has Manning’s endorsement, as Manning enjoyed one of the best statistical seasons of his career in his second year in Ben McAdoo’s system. He threw for a career-best 35 touchdown passes while passing for 4,436 yards, the second highest total of his career.
While the stats look nice on paper, McAdoo and Manning will hope to translate those numbers into wins in 2016 and put an end to the Giants current 4-year playoff drought.