Odell Beckham Jr. Outshines Other Stars in NFL Pro Bowl


Don’t try and tell Odell Beckham Jr. that the Pro Bowl is a meaningless game. The New York Giants rookie wide receiver, who was originally a first alternate, ended up taking the place of Calvin Johnson and starting for Team Michael Irvin, helping them defeat Team Cris Carter by a score of 32-28 in Glendale, Arizona.

They will be playing the Super Bowl at the same location one week later, but there were still plenty of stars shining in the NFL’s annual All-Star Game, one that has had its fair share of well-deserved criticism due to the lack of aggressive play. The league has tried many different things to change it, from moving the game up to the off week between the conference championship round and the Super Bowl, hosting it at the site of the Super Bowl a few times (and also at its regular location in Hawaii the other years) and finally by scrapping the AFC-NFC format with the teams comprising of a draft by two former players who also coach the teams.

Nov 23, 2014; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham (13) catches a one handed touchdown against by Dallas Cowboys cornerback

Brandon Carr

(39) during the second quarter at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports

For whatever it’s worth, Sunday’s game was a fun and competitive one and the fans and players alike seemed to enjoy it. That’s the bottom line, so it seems as if commissioner Roger Goodell’s threat to cancel the game a few years ago after a debacle of one that resembled an all-red shirt 11-on-11 drill was taken seriously.

Beckham was the talk of the pre-game warm-ups with a number of one-handed grabs similar to his now famous “catch” in November versus the Dallas Cowboys. He dazzled everyone by putting on a show before even strapping on the helmet and pads, also kicking a 46-yard field goal in between the experimental narrow goal posts (14 feet wide, four less than the regulation 18 foot width). This is a dynamic player who is already a star in a league full of them.

More from New York Giants

He became the first Giants rookie to start in a Pro Bowl and did not let anyone down. Beckham finished with five receptions for 89 yards and two of them were highlight reel worthy. Both came from passes by Detroit’s Matthew Stafford, with one down the middle of the field and Beckham having to lay out all the way to bring it in. The other was after Stafford scrambled around buying extra time until he saw Beckham coming back towards him along the left sideline. The LSU alum had to cut back in front of Antonio Cromartie of the Cardinals and snare it out of the air.

The fans should get used to seeing Beckham at the Pro Bowl…unless the Giants just happen to make the Super Bowl that season, of course.

Next: Was the Steve Spagnuolo Hiring the Right Move For the Giants?