What In Tarnation!?
Odell Beckham Jr. has really been turning heads in the NFL, and I’m not just talking about cornerbacks. Everyone’s been taking notice. ODB is even an up-and-coming candidate for being featured on his own TARNATION! Sports T-shirts!
But seriously, I’ve been so impressed with Odell Beckham Jr., I thought I would go back and compare his stats to those of the best wide receivers in football today. What I found was pretty surprising, and I think you’ll agree it’s somewhat shocking.
I took a look over to one of my favorite websites, Pro Football Reference for some stat magic…
In Larry Fitzgerald’s rookie year 2004, here’s what his numbers looked like:
And here’s what Odell Beckham Jr. has done over six games as a rookie:
Notice targets versus receptions. Fitzgerald caught just above 50% of the balls thrown to him, while Beckham has caught 64.4% of the balls thrown to him.
Now here’s the really interesting thing. Fitz’s second year stats:
Compares favorably with Beckham’s? Now, if you project Beckham’s statistics to 16 games (now we do know that’s always a crapshoot but so freakin’ what, we’re having fun aren’t we???), here’s what Beckham would end up with:
While he would not be catching as many balls, Beckham’s 64.4% beats Fitzgeralds 62.4% target to catch ratio. Now of course this is just for fun, but I’d say he’s somewhat close to Fitzgerald’s output when you compare the second season of Fitzgerald versus the rookie season of Beckham. Pretty impressive.
How about Megatron?
Here’s what his rookie stats looked like in 2007:
Interestingly enough, Johnson caught almost the ratio as Fitzgerald in his rookie season, 51.6%.
And again, here’s what Odell Beckham Jr. has done over six games as a rookie:
Notice the yards per game difference? And the target to catch ratio again?
How about Johnson’s second year? here you go…
Are you seeing what I am seeing? Now again, these are just projected stats of Beckham’s. So like Bill Parcells said, let’s not put him in the hall of fame just yet. However, I’d say Beckham compares favorably with both Megatron and Fitzgerald at this point of his career. Provided that he stays healthy (and that’s always a risk), he should be just as good or better than those guys. Now that’s something for Giants fans to look forward to!
In the back of my mind, I have a desire to check Jerry Rice’s rookie statistics, but the Parcells in me won’t let me.