Former NFL cornerback Adam «Pac-Man» Jones recently referred to new Baltimore Ravens wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. as the «Ferrari» of the team.
The 30-year-old, who is still working at 100% after tearing his ACL in Super Bowl LVI with the Los Angeles Rams, has coincidentally been using that analogy as well. However, there is one specific way that he wants to drive that Ferrari in terms of the 2023 NFL season.
He explains why he hasn’t been around the Ravens’ practice facility other than the mandatory minicamp.
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«That’s the analogy I’ve been kidding around with,» Beckham told Fox News Digital by phone before Fanatics’ Merch Madness Event, which he was part of with Tom Brady and DJ Khaled in Miami on Tuesday morning. «I think the excitement when I signed with Baltimore, I wasn’t there, we have to get to the place where we understand that all of these (OTA) things are voluntary, and each individual has their own life and we don’t know what’s going on with the individual and their life.
«I joked with my people, ‘I know the Ravens just bought a Ferrari and they want to take it to the track, but I want to get that Ferrari out to the track when we’re in California, it’s 82 degrees with a little bit of a breeze. Not when it’s a little rain and you can’t push it to the limit.'»
In other words, Beckham won’t be rushing back onto the pitch no matter how much he misses it.
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He tried to downplay wearing a Ravens uniform for the first time during mandatory minicamp earlier this month because of his level of enthusiasm practicing for the first time since 2022. He was out all of last season and, despite the rumors, Before a team could sign him to make a Super Bowl run, his recovery progress wasn’t where it needed to be.
Today, Beckham admits that «the knee feels great» and believes he’ll be ready to play on Sept. 10, when the Ravens host the Houston Texans on Opening Day.
The three-time Pro Bowler knows that Week 1 isn’t the only game the Ravens need him for this season, though, which is why the long game is the mentality right now.
«I think I’m at the place where I have that notch more where I’m kicking and I’m trying to salvage it because these seasons are long, man, and it’s all about peaking at the right time,» he said. explained. All the other reporters and people [say], ‘Oh, you’re not on the OTAs’ and this and that. I’ve seen people go out and go through OTAs and mandatory camps and they seem to be ready for the season. Then, a week or two in the camp, they are burned out.
«It’s all about peaking at the right time. There’s no other way to say it. I’m on that slow slope to where, September 10 or whatever, that’s when I’ll be ready.» [I’m] He’s not ready to play in a game right now and he’s fine. I think the most important thing is how to get there and how to last the season.»
Beckham, like other NFL stars, is no stranger to skipping OTAs to work out on his own individual program. However, some feel he needs to build a relationship with his teammates on these voluntary outings at Ravens facilities so he can start working when training camp and the regular season come into the frame.
However, there are other ways to do it.
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Beckham admitted that he spoke with his quarterback, Lamar Jackson, on Tuesday morning to find out where he was training. They are expected to have some representatives on the field on Wednesday to continue working on building a «connection and trust.»
At the same time, Beckham knows that he and Jackson will build real chemistry come game time.
«I try to tell people: if we were on OTAs all the time, we were working out and throwing passes, [chemistry] It is built into the game. Practice is fine and all, but you come into the game and a pass goes by and it’s a pick or whatever. It’s built on in-game replays and seeing that success there. It starts with being able to communicate and speak off the field. ‘How do you see this? Well, how do you want me to do this route? I’ve always been the receiver, like, you tell me. I don’t care if the quarterback was a rookie. Tell me what you need me to do and I’ll do it and we’ll adjust from there.»
For those who say otherwise, Beckham is not listening to outside noises.
He doesn’t think he has anything to prove to anyone but himself.
Like the Ferrari analogy, I had one for this case, too.
«Purell Hand Sanitizer kills 99.9% of germs,» he said. «There’s always going to be a little bit, no matter what. It’s just the way our world is set up: we’re not made to like everyone.» [person]. Nobody is perfect, and if they are perfect, we are going to look for the flaws anyway.
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«I’m always trying to prove to myself who I am. I’m definitely looking to get back on track and God willing, if this is my last season or there are more seasons after that, I’m just looking to give it my all.» just for this year. That’s where my eyes are.»