If you’re planning to bet on any NFL games this weekend, USA TODAY Sports’ Lorenzo Reyes says these three are the way to go.
USA TODAY Sports
Von Miller became the NFL’s highest-paid linebacker last year. But now he’s ready for his pay stubs to be overshadowed by Odell Beckham, whom Miller says deserves to be the league’s best-compensated player.
“Odell should be the highest-paid player ever in the National Football League,” Miller said Wednesday ahead of Sunday night’s matchup, when his Denver Broncos will host Beckham’s winless New York Giants.
“He should be the highest-paid player ever, regardless of position. That’s just the type of player he is. It doesn’t matter if it’s quarterback, offensive line, receiver. It doesn’t matter. The type of impact that he has on the globe, the type of viewers that he brings — just him as a player. That makes up for him not playing quarterback.
“So, he’s a once in a lifetime player. Definitely deserving. There’s no reason that he won’t come back and be the same type of player. That’s just one of the guys that you invest in. When you get a guy like that, that’s the guy that you invest in, that you want to keep around for his whole career.”
Beckham, who had season-ending ankle surgery this week, is making $1.8 million this year. He’s scheduled to earn $8.46 million in 2018, the option (and final) year of his rookie contract. Before being hurt, he had eclipsed 90 catches, 1,300 receiving yards and 10 touchdowns in each of his NFL seasons.
Beckham expressed over the summer that he believed he should earn the league’s top dollar, even though that’s a stratosphere typically reserved for quarterbacks.
The top 16 average salaries in the NFL all belong to star passers. Miami Dolphins defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh checks in at No. 17, while Miller follows at 18. Earlier this year, Detroit Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford and Oakland Raiders quarterback Derek Carr became the first players to average $25 million or more annually.
Pittsburgh Steelers star Antonio Brown is at the top of the receiver scale with a four-year, $68 million deal.
Miller, who’s spoken to Beckham since the operation on his fractured ankle, was disappointed he wouldn’t be able to face his friend on the field.
“We had this game circled a long time ago,” said Miller. “This was a game that I was looking forward to playing in. I wanted to play. This is my first time playing against O and the Giants, so I was looking forward to it. This was the game. That’s how it is when life happens.”
Follow Nate Davis on Twitter @ByNateDavis
PHOTOS: NFL power rankings heading into Week 6