Giants OC calls Odell Beckham Jr. 'vital part' of team's offense

Beckham also belted a homer during BP before a Rays-Angels game in mid-May.

Odell Beckham Jr.'s future in New York still remains uncertain, but that doesn't mean he is unappreciated.

When asked how the Giants are dealing with the ongoing trade rumors involving the wide receiver, new offensive coordinator Mike Shula praised his athletic abilities and hinted that the team isn't looking to get rid of him without a beneficial deal.

"Again, as we still work through this with Coach [Pat] Shurmur, he's obviously a vital part of our offense," Shula said, via ESPN. "When you have guys that can make plays and put points on the board you try to feature them as much as you can. But you also have to realize that you've got other components and hopefully some more as we move forward into the offseason and the draft, where we can put players on the field and we're not going to be predictable.

"And if teams want to try to take Odell away, then we have answers. And good answers."

Despite Giants co-owner John Mara saying the organization is not "shopping" Beckham, reports last month suggested the team has asked for at least two first round picks for the three-time Pro Bowl wideout. The Rams had been linked to Beckham but instead opted to send the 23rd overall pick of this month's NFL Draft to the Patriots for Brandin Cooks and a fourth-round pick.

Although Beckham comes with his share of baggage, Shula is seemingly insistent on keeping him on this roster this upcoming season.

"God, he's such an explosive player," Shula said. "We've watched what everyone else has seen him do on the field.

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"I'm really looking forward to working with a guy like that."

Beckham, 25, is coming off a season-ending ankle injury that forced him to miss 12 games in 2017. Still, he holds the NFL record for fewest games to 200 catches and fewest games to 3,000 career receiving yards through his first three seasons.