Morgan let his displeasure be known on Wednesday night during his opening monologue at the ESPYS. The one-time Saturday Night Live star started to jab by saying he’s not a fan of players changing teams.
“Anthony Davis went to the Lakers. Kawhi went to the Clippers,” Morgan said. “And Odell Beckham Jr. went from my Giants to the Browns. And Odell is sitting there like acting like it was a great idea. The only reason people leave New York for Cleveland is because they are in witness protection.”
Odell takes the host’s jab in stride, pointing at the camera wearing his Browns Orange watch.
“I don’t care what Odell thinks,” Morgan said as the closing line to his monologue. “He’s down there and I’m up here.”
Morgan was one of the first people to welcome Beckham to New York when the Giants drafted him No. 12 overall in 2014.
The outspoken wide receiver was traded to the Browns from the Giants in a move that sent shockwaves through the NFL. The blockbuster sent first- and third-round picks and safety Jabrill Peppers to the Giants in exchange for Beckham, giving Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield a pair of Pro Bowl pass-catchers to work with. The team traded for Jarvis Landry — Beckham’s best friend and teammate at LSU — last offseason.
Beckham signed a monster deal with the Giants last offseason, that still stands as the most lucrative among wide receivers. However, the relationship seemed to sour last season as he openly criticized his quarterback Eli Manning and seemed generally unhappy as the team struggled.
“I just felt with the Giants I was just stuck at a place that wasn’t working for me anymore. I felt like I wasn’t going to be able to reach my full potential there; mentally, physically, spiritually, everything I felt capable of doing, I just couldn’t see it happening there,” Beckham told Complex UK following the trade. “So I think allowing me to be in an environment where I can be myself and give it a different approach, I feel like my football will benefit. I’m just excited about being able to play football again and not have to deal with all the other stuff and politics that came with my previous role.”
OBJ Shows off New Look at ESPYS
What fans will likely notice in that video is that Beckham is missing his patented long, bleached mohawk, signaling he’s ready for a completely fresh start with his new squad.
The Browns’ wide receiver showed off a clean new cut at the annual awards show, keeping his patented beard. Without the long hair, he’s likely going to have to go in for a new helmet fitting when Browns training camp starts later this month.
Beckham has won a pair of ESPYs in his career. He won “Best Play” for his one-handed grab in 2015 and paired it with the “Best Breakthrough Athlete” award.
Beckham ‘Giddy’ to be in Cleveland
No matter what Morgan says, Odell is happy to be in Cleveland, where he can play with his college teammate Jarvis Landry and catch balls from Baker Mayfield, who has inserted himself as an early contender in the NFL MVP race.
During minicamp last month, Beckham voiced how excited he is to wear Orange and Brown.
“Words don’t even really do it justice for me,’’ said Beckham. “I’m almost giddy, I feel like a little kid with the excitement that I have, seeing Baker, seeing these guys. You know we talk a lot about this offense but this defense is something special and this team is really coming together.’’
Much of that excitement is linked to Mayfield, who Beckham quickly learned is much different than his previous quarterback with both his demeanor and skill set.
“I’ve watched Baker since Oklahoma … he’s got an arm,” Beckham said. “I have to get adjusted to the speed. He’s throwing that ball hard. Just catching them from him the first day it was completely different.”
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