Freddie Kitchens on first words to Odell Beckham Jr.: ‘I love you’
Cleveland Browns head coach Freddie Kitchen is understandably thrilled over the stunning acquisition of Odell Beckham Jr. a few weeks back. While the first-year coach has yet to meet the superstar wide receiver, Kitchens already has picked his first words.
“I love you,” Kitchens said at NFL coaches breakfast Tuesday at the NFL’s annual league meeting. “Give him a hug. ‘Show me how to catch the ball with one hand.’”
#Browns HC Freddie Kitchens hasn’t met @obj yet. So what’s the first thing he’ll say to his new star WR?— Kimberley A. Martin (@ByKimberleyA) March 26, 2019
“I love you…” pic.twitter.com/16jL9MwRBA
Beckham is expected to be in attendance at the start of the Browns’ voluntary offseason workout program on Monday, April 1, so Kitchens won’t have to wait long to say those three words.
Kitchens, on a more serious note, mentioned how he’s eager to get to know Beckham, and he suspects a lot of the unflattering things that have been said about the enigmatic wideout may not be entirely accurate, saying, “Perception is not always reality.”
Beckham is said to view his departure from the New York Giants as “bittersweet,” and even entered a short-lived social-media lockdown in the wake of the trade. Kitchens sympathizes with how Beckham was thrown for a loop, as the trade seemingly came out of nowhere.
“He’s a human being,” Kitchens said, via The Alliance Review. “He has feelings. He’s not just some cartoon character who kind of pops up in the media. Two weeks ago, his life was turned upside down. He didn’t know he was getting traded. He had to take some time to see what life was going to be like now, post-New York.
“Odell has a family. Odell has people that care about him. He has people who care about him in New York, and he cares about people in New York. Anytime your life changes, you need some time to process it. He’s no different than anyone else. You take a job in another city, you’re going to have emotions about leaving.”
Kitchens went on to say Beckham will love it in Cleveland and that the Browns will prove to be a perfect match for his approach and skillset. The fans are clearly over the moon over his impending arrival, and the hope is Beckham will soon feel the same way.