99¢ per month for 3 months
99¢ per month for 3 months

Giants WR Beckham deals with bum thumb

Justin Rogers
The Detroit News
Odell Beckham Jr. of the New York Giants runs the ball to the end zone to score a 61-yard touchdown against the Dallas Cowboys during the third quarter of the game at MetLife Stadium on Dec. 11.

Allen Park — Matthew Stafford’s middle finger won’t be the only worrisome digit on Sunday. New York Giants receiver Odell Beckham has been dealing with a thumb issue that’s hindered his ability to catch the ball.

Beckham dropped three passes last Monday, but still led his team with four catches for 94 yards, including a 61-yard game-winning touchdown. Afterward, the typically sure-handed receiver joked about hitting the JUGS machine, but later admitted it’s not something he can do right now.

“No, I was just saying it for fun,” Beckham said. “It’s just tough. It’s a line between wanting to get better and also trying to protect that thumb for right now because you can’t keep taking too much contact to it for right now until it’s game time.”

Unlike Stafford’s middle finger, the thumb is the most important digit when it comes to gripping the football. While he continues to play and practice through the pain, Beckham admits he’s been attempting to catch the ball in a way that reduces the impact on his thumb.

“Yes, you look at it differently,” Beckham said. “You try and find the spiral and just place your hands around it the best way you can without having to go through that contact. It’s something that crosses your mind, but certain times it crosses your mind more than others when you’re going to make a catch.”

Even with the injury, Beckham ranks fourth in receptions, receiving yardage and touchdowns.  He’s topped 90 yards in four of the past five games.

Lions' Caldwell coached beleaguered Elrod