Former safety Antrel Rolle claims New York Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. can be a great leader for Big Blue.
An All-American, All-Pro and Super Bowl champion, the opinion of former safety Antrel Rolle is well valued in football circles, especially in New York where he spent five of his NFL seasons.
Rolle spoke to The Athletic’s Patricia Traina this week and has high hopes for another highly decorated New York Giant, receiver Odell Beckham Jr. Often criticized for a perceived lack of work effort and focus on the game, Beckham poses no problem to Rolle who believes the star catcher can be a dominant force in blue for years to come.
“He turns around the game by himself not just with his miraculous plays, but by making the guys around him step up and play that much harder because he goes 200% every down,” Rolle said. “Those are the type of guys you need on the team.”
Rolle was teammates with Beckham during the latter’s rookie season in 2014, his penultimate NFL season, spending the last in Chicago. He knows what Beckham is capable of, and stressed the importance of having his teammates buy into it.
“He can be one of the most dominant leaders the Giants have ever had,” Rolle said before cautiously adding “But he’s going to have to find a way to deliver to where his teammates aren’t going to look at him sideways, but rather respect him and embrace what he’s saying.”
Beckham got off to a good start in terms of adopting a leadership role this week, when it was announced that, contrary to offseason rumors, he will indeed report on time to training camp.
The Giants’ first-team practice will come on Thursday afternoon at 2:45 p.m. ET.