As I write this, Odell Beckham is standing on the sideline of a football stadium, playing a game between the New York Giants and Dallas Cowboys.
He knows he made an incredible catch.
But does he know what this means? I doubt it.
With the above grab, Beckham has made history. Not the kind of nonsense sports history broadcasters and athletes tend to blather on about. A team does not truly make history when it wins a Super Bowl, for example, because Super Bowls are won every year. A hitter does not make history by becoming the first lefty to drive in five RBI in a July evening game against a team named after an animal—because no one cares.
But Beckham made history. Real history. His catch was so dazzling … so unprecedented … so miraculous and spectacular and otherworldly that it will, almost certainly, be replayed for decades to come. People will remember the catch, just as they remember, oh, Michael Jordan torching the Celtics for 63 in a 1986 playoff game. Long after he retires, Beckham will be asked about it. When he dies, it makes his obituary. They will speak of the evening of Nov. 23, 2014, when a rookie receiver made a play unlike any other play.
He just doesn’t know it yet.
Which is sorta cool.