Home New York Giants News Giants won’t compare Malik Nabers to Odell Beckham, but …

Giants won’t compare Malik Nabers to Odell Beckham, but …

by Guest Blogger

They need a Beckham-like impact from the rookie wide receiver

How well can Malik Nabers carry the burden of expectations on his 21-year-old shoulders? The answer to that question will go a long way toward what kind of 2024 season the New York Giants rookie wide receiver, the No. 6 overall pick in the 2024 NFL Draft, will have.

There are big-time expectations for the former LSU star. Those start with this:

  • Be the Giants’ best wide receiver since Odell Beckham Jr., who was a superstar for New York from the moment he stepped on the field.

Putting up nice numbers, like becoming the first 1,000-yard receiver for the Giants since Beckham did it in each of his first four full seasons, isn’t the only expectation. There are these, which are corollary to putting up nice numbers:

  • Be the difference-maker who changes an offense that was 30th in the NFL in points scored last season.
  • Help the Giants get better play out of Daniel Jones.
  • Be a big part of the reason the Giants win enough games to take the heat off head coach Brian Daboll.

Mostly, the expectation for Nabers is to be a Beckham-like star from the start.

“I feel like it’s no pressure,” Nabers said during minicamp. “I’ve been playing football all of my life. I’m just trying to stay up with the guys here. You know, put the competition that those older guys want to see out of me. I’m just trying to be me, trying to level up my game every day I’m out here.”

Let’s discuss Nabers as we continue player-by-player profiles of the Giants’ 90-man roster.

The skinny

Height: 6-foot
Weight: 200
Opening day age: 21
Position: Wide receiver
Experience: Rookie
Contract: Four years, $29,207,750 | 2024 cap hit: $5,310,500 | Guaranteed at signing: $29,207,750

Career to date

Nabers helped LSU quarterback Jayden Daniels win the Heisman Trophy by leading the FBS in receiving yards with 1,569 and earning unanimous All-American honors. Along he way he caught 89 passes (11th in the nation), 14 touchdowns (third in the nation) and averaged 17.6 yards per catch. In 2022, Nabers had 72 receptions for 1,017yards (14.1 yards per catch) and three touchdowns.

Nabers finished his career as LSU’s all-time leader in receiving yards (3,003). That means Nabers topped players like Beckham, Justin Jefferson and Ja’Marr Chase.

2024 outlook

Nabers, the youngest player on the roster, challenged his teammates during the spring.

“When I’m out there on the field, the level of competition rises at its highest – because my competition, I bring the dog, I bring the juice when I’m out there,” he said.

“So having me on the field, it’s been helpful to those older guys here. Just trying to bring some enthusiasm out there on the field. The celebrations, I know you’ve seen a lot of the celebrations, so just trying to get all the guys ready to practice.”

Big-time catches like this one are what the Giants are hoping for:

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Nabers is +600 at DraftKings Sports to lead rookies in receiving yards, behind Marvin Harrison Jr.

DraftKings has Nabers’ over/under for receiving yards at 875.5, and his regular-season receiving touchdowns over/under at 5.5.

The Giants probably need Nabers to exceed those numbers, and the expectations (yes, back to that) are that he will if he stays healthy.

Nabers will be compared to Beckham, both because of the college they attended and the NFL team they were drafted by.

On draft night, Giants head coach Brian Daboll would not bite on comparing the two.

“I’m not going to compare [Nabers] him to anybody,” Daboll said. “I think he’s a fantastic player. He’s got a lot of good attributes. Starting with his personality and demeanor, his competitive stamina. He’s got some dog to him.”

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