EAST RUTHERFORD, New Jersey — Tom Coughlin is looking to change some things about Odell Beckham Jr.'s game.
It's nothing big, and certainly not the edge the recordi-setting New York Giants' rookie brings to the field.
Coughlin just wants him to tone his celebrations after scoring, the little dance, the ball spin and even what may be an unconscious glance at an opponent that got one official to throw a flag on Sunday for taunting.
"The exuberance, if it goes too far, obviously, it is not a good thing, so we will continue to work with him," Coughlin said Monday, a day after a wild 37-27 win over the St. Louis Rams. "I spoke to him on the way out on the plane about a couple of things I was interested in continuing to talk to him about and why I wanted him to learn as much as he possibly could and for me to help him going forward because I want everyone to realize the quality of the young man, and not be offset by some of things that he has done."
Coughlin said Beckham agrees with him.
"He looked at me and said, 'Coach, stay after me,'" the 68-year-old coach added. "He wants to learn and he wants to continue to improve and be better."
It's a good relationship and one that may get to continue with the Giants (6-9) riding a three-game winning streak and Coughlin having a chance to keep his job.
Whatever happens, Coughlin wants Beckham to keep playing with an edge.
"There is no way you want to take anything away from the guy on the field, except for some of the things you see," Coughlin said. "I am not trying to tell you that everything he does is intentionally directed at the opponent. It is not, but if it is being interpreted by the officials as it is, then we have to do something about it."
Coughlin was a little surprised that Beckham was penalized for taunting after his first touchdown. He had spun the ball previously after scoring without drawing a flag. But this time, the official didn't hesitate to penalize the wideout.
"They felt that it was taunting," Coughlin said. "There is some evidence that he looks one way and then he comes back and does it. Whether or not he knows who is even around him that would be the question."
There is no question that Beckham, who missed the first four games of the season with a hamstring injury, is tearing up opposing defenses and drawing more than his share of attention. The Rams tried to get him off his game with a couple of late hits, one that resulted in a melee and three players ejected. It didn't work. He finished with eight catches for 148 yards and two touchdowns, including a crucial 80-yarder with the Rams threatening.
His 79 receptions, 1,120 yards and 11 touchdowns are team rookie records. He extended his NFL-rookie record with eight consecutive games of at least 90 yards receiving, one shy of the league mark set by Hall of Famer Michael Irvin in 1995.
"Here is a kid that runs the entire length of the field with every ball in practice," Coughlin said "It is one thing to see someone do that and then it is such an outstanding example for everyone else, but that is the kind of energy and excitement that he brings to the enjoyment of playing. That is there and it is there full-time. You want that."
NOTES: Coughlin said Eli Manning's focus was laser-like in throwing for 391 yards and three touchdowns Sunday. ...The coach was impressed with the play of some of the young unsung players — DE Kerry Wynn had a sack, an interception and a fumble recovery. RB Orleans Darkwa ran for his first NFL touchdown and forced a fumble. ... Veteran WR Rueben Randle also had a career day with six catches for a career-high 132 yards and a touchdown. Randle has twice been benched for the first quarter for violating team rules in recent weeks. "The way in which he approached this game, I would hope he would stamp on the back of his hand to remind him of how he prepared for this one and how well he played," Coughlin said.
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