As football fans prepare for the 2019-20 NFL season, we will begin getting answers to some of the offseason's biggest questions and see if some of the most talked-about teams will live up to the hype. No team ended up with more hype prior to the season than the new-look Cleveland Browns, and perhaps the biggest reason for that was a key offseason acquisition: Odell Beckham Jr.
The former Giant is one of the biggest names in sports - and, depending on who you ask, one of the most polarizing. Beckham's loud personality has made him a lot of fans, but also garnered bad press. But Beckham is easily one of the best wide receivers in the game, and all eyes will be on him this season to see how he fares in the brand-new Browns offense.
Beckham's historically good start to his NFL career has also netted him quite a bit of money. How much is he worth?
Odell Beckham Jr.'s Net Worth
Beckham, still just 26, has been estimated to be worth as much as $25 million, according to Celebrity Net Worth. Beckham will be entering just his sixth year in the league this season, meaning 80% of his career was played on his initial rookie contract. So the bulk of that worth, should the estimation be true, is likely from the huge endorsement deals that came with being a burgeoning star in New York City.
And with the majority of his record-breaking contract yet to be completed, that figure is going to grow exponentially in the near future.
Odell Beckham Jr.'s Career
Beckham comes from an impressive family of athletes: his father played football at Louisiana State University, and his mother was a track and field star. So Odell, unsurprisingly, was a gifted athlete early on as well. Though he also excelled at basketball, soccer and track and field, Beckham made football his sport of choice for college. He attended his parents' alma mater, LSU. There, he and fellow receiver (and future Browns teammate) Jarvis Landry spent three years making the Tigers one of the foremost offenses in college, while Beckham also impressed as a punt and kickoff returner. The team made the BCS National Championship game in his rookie year and made bowl games his sophomore and junior year. After that, he declared for the NFL Draft.
New York Giants
In May of 2014, the New York Giants selected Beckham 12th overall with their first pick in the NFL Draft. The hype to his rookie year was subdued at first due to a nagging hamstring injury that limited him in the preseason and kept him sidelined for the first four games of the 2014 season.
But once Beckham saw the NFL field (he would appear in the team's remaining 12 games), he immediately established himself as one of the foremost young receivers in football. He became the first wide receiver to have at least 90 receptions and 10 touchdowns in his rookie year, and his 1,305 receiving yards was 10th best in the NFL despite missing the first four games. His most memorable moment of the year came during a Sunday night game against the Dallas Cowboys in November. On a deep pass from Eli Manning, Beckham made a phenomenal one-handed catch for a touchdown - despite being interfered with by Dallas cornerback Brandon Carr. The catch became one of the most talked about plays of the decade. Unfortunately, the Giants lost the game. Beckham was the bright spot on a 6-10 Giants team, winning Offensive Rookie of the Year.
There was no sophomore slump for OBJ. 2015 saw Beckham increase his reception total (96 vs. 91), receiving yards (1,450 vs. 1,305) and touchdowns (13 vs. 12). He finished fifth in receiving yards and touchdowns, and made his second consecutive Pro Bowl. But a struggling defense for the Giants saw the team once again go 6-10.
Though a phenomenal year statistically for Beckham, 2015 saw controversy. In a loss against the Carolina Panthers, Beckham got into multiple physical confrontations with cornerback Josh Norman and incurred multiple penalties as a result. His actions caused the NFL to suspend Beckham for one game.
2016 was the best season the Giants had had in several years. A busy offseason drastically improved the defense, who managed to generally stay healthy and play to the top of their abilities. The offense struggled to put up points, but its lone bright spot was, of course, Beckham, who once again surpassed 1,300 receiving yards and 10 touchdowns for the third straight year. He had gone from exciting young rookie to a player mentioned as one of the absolute best receivers in the game. The team went 11-5 to snag a Wild Card slot. But the team underachieved drastically in their playoff game against Aaron Rodgers and the Packers, losing 38-13. Beckham had just four catches on 11 targets for 28 yards, and had a number of uncharacteristic drops. Some have tried to attribute this performance to the fallout stemming from the controversy of a photo of Beckham and other Giants receivers partying on a boat in Miami days before the game.
2017 was a disaster for the Giants in every sense. They went 3-13 and fired head coach Ben McAdoo midway through his second season. Beckham put up solid numbers in his first four games of the season despite playing through injury. But late in a game against the Chargers, Beckham fractured his left ankle, taking him out of the game and requiring season-ending surgery.
There was concern on how well Beckham could play in 2018 coming off such a serious injury. But just before the regular season the Giants appeared to have total faith in him, signing him to a 5-year, $95 million contract to make him the highest-paid receiver in football. Though Beckham missed the last four games of the year with injury, he reestablished himself as a force, surpassing 1,000 receiving yards on 77 receptions. He even threw two touchdown passes as well, highlights in an otherwise lost season for a 5-11 Giants team.
In March of 2019, it was announced that Beckham was being traded to the Cleveland Browns in exchange for safety Jabrill Peppers, as well as a 2019 first-round and third-round draft pick. The move pairs Beckham with his LSU teammate Jarvis Landry and exciting young quarterback Baker Mayfield. Though not a trendy Super Bowl pick, the move has helped turn the Browns into one of the more interesting teams to watch and one that could compete in the AFC North.
Odell Beckham Jr.'s Contract: How Much Does He Have Left?
Beckham technically played 2018 on the last year of his rookie contract, but also received a $20 million signing bonus for the extension. This year with the Browns will be his first official one under his contract extension.
According to Spotrac, combined with salary and bonuses Beckham is estimated to make at least $14 million on every year of the contract, including $17 million this year. Completing the contract with bonuses would, after the 2023 season, put Beckham's career cash earnings in the NFL at approximately $108.9 million.
Odell Beckham Jr.'s Endorsements
Of course, Beckham wasn't exactly wanting for money prior to the extension. Even ignoring how much his rookie deal was, Odell Beckham, Jr. spent the first five years of his career as the star player of a team in New York. That made him one of the most sought-after athletes in terms of endorsements and sponsorship deals.
His most notable deal is likely the one he signed with Nike (NKE - Get Report) in 2017. At five years for $25 million (with incentives that, if met, could increase the number of years and money), it was the most lucrative deal Nike has ever made with an NFL player.
Beckham has also had endorsement deals with brands that include Dunkin' (DNKN - Get Report) , Head & Shoulders and Foot Locker (FL - Get Report) . He has also done commercials for the NFL, most recognizably an ad that aired during Super Bowl LII and subsequently went viral where he and Eli Manning recreated an iconic scene from "Dirty Dancing."
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