Beckham remains a great player. The Giants have to ask whether they want to make a long-term financial commitment to him soon, or risk having him stay away from OTAs, training camp, the preseason, and possibly regular-season games. If they’re not willing to make a financial commitment, they should trade him to a team that will, and get what they can for him. Otherwise, the distractions will continue — whether originating with Beckham or with those who have tried to boost their own relevance by forcing their way into his story.
“It’s disappointing, some of the things that happened,” he told ESPN, “but nevertheless, it’s a huge step for me. I put pads back on. A lot of people wrote me off just to even get to this point. I’m definitely emotional about it. I’m definitely happy about it. This isn’t the end goal for me, but I’m having fun again. I have a smile on my face.”
Manziel says he’s hoping an NFL team will sign him, but if not he’d likely play in the Canadian Football League.
“The message that I’m sending is showing up every day and going to meetings,” he said. “Being engaged in everything that is going on during practice and in the game. I can’t control what is going on [with NFL teams’ interests] and I don’t know what’s going on in NFL meetings. If that’s the case, if the NFL is something that pops up, cool. If not, I’m going to work until I get back there. We’ll see how things play out.”
The 25-year-old Manziel last played in 2015, when he started six games for the Browns.
Smith, who has been arrested for violating the terms of a protective order arising from a domestic violence arrest and who had a bench warrant issued for his arrest after failing to appear at hearing in court, was jailed this time around with bail of $500,000. Public records indicate that he currently remains incarcerated, in advance of an April 11 court hearing.
The list of pending charges against Smith now includes three separate counts of contempt of court.
Smith last played in the NFL in 2015, before the league implemented a permanent banishment with the ability to apply for reinstatement after a year. It’s a dramatic fall for a player who had 42 sacks in his first 43 regular-season games.