Continuing with the Rookie Pulse series, this week Odell Beckham Jr will be under the spotlight as we delve into his life history, pre-draft process, and how his skill set will transfer on Sundays. If you missed last weeks Rookie Pulse you can find it here.
Beckham attended Isidore Newman High School in New Orleans, Louisiana. A product of a rich athletic family tree, Beckham’s father Odell Beckham Sr, played running back for (LSU) Louisiana State University from 1989-1992. Meanwhile his mother, Heather Van Norman, was an All-American track runner at LSU from 1991-1993. That kind of athleticism in the blood line propelled Beckham’s ability to play various positions in high school – he played WR/RB/QB/PR/ and DB while adding 4 years of basketball.
Beckham committed to LSU on January 8th, 2011, and he went on to have one of the most illustrious careers in LSU history. Beckham was awarded with the 2013 Paul Hornung Award Winner (Nations most versatile player) along with a plethora of other awards:
Fake Pigskin Exclusive: Join Monkey Knife Fight and Get an Instant 100% Deposit Match PLUS a Free $5 Game!
- 2013 First Team All-America Kick Returner
- 2013 First Team All-America All-Purpose
- 2013 Second Team All-America All-Purpose
- 2013 Third Team All-America All-Purpose
- 2013 Third Team All-America Wide Receiver and Kick Returner
- 2013 First Team All-SEC All-Purpose
- 2013 First Team All-SEC Return Specialist
- 2013 First Team All-SEC Wide Receiver
- 2013 First Team All-SEC Kick Returner
- 2011 SEC Coaches’ All-Freshman Team
In addition, Beckham ranks number 5th in LSU history for all-purpose yards; take a look at his career stats over his 3 year stay:
Beckham attended the scouting combine and showcased his gifted athleticism which was even more apparent without pads on. Majority of analysts would say Beckham exceeded expectations or, at worst, he held steady with his combine performance. See his combine results below:
Beckham looked the part as one of the better wide receivers during the gauntlet drill displaying smooth and swift movements while gliding across the white line. The reason this should be pointed out is because you want to see evidence of what you see on game film. Beckham did exactly that by demonstrating the ability to remain in control of his explosive speed at all times. Beckham’s hand size also stuck out; his 10 inch hands are bigger than the two “elite” prospects in Sammy Watkins and Mike Evans.
This would support the highlight reel grabs and his ability to catch the football in traffic. He did have a poor showing at the bench press only putting up 225 pounds 7 times. With that said, I would like to introduce functional strength and playing strength. This would be a case where he lacks in functional strength. We will see later in this article where the difference lies as Beckham displays playing strength.
According to SiriusXM NFL Radio, Beckham has an upcoming visit with the Philadelphia Eagles on April 23rd and 24th while having already met with the San Francisco 49ers, Pittsburgh Steelers, and Buffalo Bills; Cincinnati Bengals, Miami Dolphins, and the New York Jets. NFL teams are doing their due diligence when it comes to scouting Beckham (and many other players). We are just over two weeks away from the NFL draft!
The Bomb Shelter (film room)
This will be my third go-around with Beckham’s tape. At this point, I feel I have a very good grasp on where he excels versus areas of struggle. This first cut-up is an away game vs. (Ole Miss) University of Mississippi.
Beckham’s stats in this game – 5 receptions for 72 yards and zero touchdowns
Fantasy just got a whole lot better thanks to Monkey Knife Fight. With fast-paced games like Rapid Fire and Either/Or, it’s never been easier to play fantasy and win. New to MKF? Get Exclusive $100 Deposit Match + Free $5 Game
4:03– Below you see Beckham run a 3 or 4 yard curl route, while the defensive back is playing off-man coverage. It’s a fairly standard route, but I want to highlight this play to show the difference between Beckham and other wide-outs in this class. You see him sink his hips at the top of the route. You will notice how the DB is late when Beckham breaks back to the football and serves as evidence that Beckham doesn’t tip off his route. Adding to the fact that Beckham breaks back to the football, he still shows the ability to get both hands up and pluck the football with his arms away from his body. Many other wide-outs let the ball come into their body.
Vs Georgia(6/118/0): 5:39
Beckham is lined up in the slot position with an underneath LB in zone coverage and a nickel DB over the top — he runs an inside post route. Zach Mettenberger nearly misses the tight window he has to hit Beckham as the throw was a little behind him, but Beckham catches it cleanly with his hands away from his body. Beckham shows awareness of how deep he needs to run this post route in order to get the first down, and he also shows the ability to catch the ball after contact as he takes a big shot after the catch.
Vs Miissippi State(9/179/2): 0:05
Here you see Beckham lined up at the top of your screen near the line of scrimmage — he runs a corner post route. The defense is playing zone coverage as the linebackers bite on the play-action. Mettenberger throws this football late, but Beckham bails him out by showing “my ball mentality.” No matter what the circumstance was at this point, he was going to come down with the football in his hands.
I’d be remiss not to mention that Beckham’s flaw that stands out on film is the “dropsy” issue. He displays a few concentration lapses and looks to move up the field before securing the football. It’s common for young receivers to want to “get up and go” just a tad too early, but even some of the best receivers in the game display this concentration lapse from time to time. In my eyes this is an easy fix for Beckham because he is such a natural hands catcher. It’s very likely a case of trying to do too much. As seen in the cut-ups above, Beckham displays the ability to break back to the football, sink his hips in and out of breaks, and catch the football away from his body. He creates separation with his sharp cuts, high-points the football, and catches the ball both during and after contact.
Beckham’s current ADP is 81st overall or the 39th wide receiver off the board (dynastyleaguefootball.com). This is around the likes of Tavon Austin, Cecil Shorts, and Golden Tate. If that ADP remains steady I will be an ecstatic dynasty owner.
Beckham is currently my number 3 wide receiver and flirting with Evans for that number 2 spot.