After drawing a rebuke from the NFL for wearing a $350,000 watch in Week 1, Odell Beckham Jr. has parlayed the controversy into a new endorsement deal with another watchmaker. The wide receiver from Cleveland Browns announced on Wednesday a collaboration with Sweden’s Daniel Wellington-two days after warming up for his Week 2 match while wearing a Richard Mille $2 million model.
Beckham was asked at Wednesday’s practice if he had been planning to parlay the watch controversy into an endorsement deal. ‘There’s always a method to the madness,’ Beckham told reporters. ‘The partnership with Daniel Wellington, I’m very happy to do that.’ The value of Beckham’s contract with Daniel Wellington has not been revealed.
The company posted a video of Beckham on Twitter as part of the announcement, writing, ‘We’re thrilled to announced that @obj is joining #DanielWellington as one of our new Icons. #OdellBeckhamJr.’ On its website, the prices of Daniel Wellington watches are listed between $139 and $229 – far less expensive than the Richard Mille model Beckham wore in Week 1.
OBJ on the watches: “There’s always a method to the madness.” pic.twitter.com/LRSnyDbnjf
— Jake Trotter (@Jake_Trotter) September 18, 2019
The NFL reminded Beckham of its rule against carrying ‘tough items’ on the field after that match, which the Browns lost to the Tennessee Titans. Beckham vented on Twitter following the warning: ‘If it ain’t one thing… it’s another.’ He also reminded reporters that his Richard Mille watch was actually plastic and not metal.
In any case, Beckham wore a $2 million Richard Mille watch before Monday’s game against the Jets, but opted to take it off before the opening kickoff. After Monday’s game, which the Browns won 23-3 and included an 89-yard catch-and-run touchdown by the watch-wearing entrepreneur, Beckham hinted at his new deal: ‘I think Daniel Wellington might be a better watch than these, a little classier, not as flashy as this one. I’m just blessed.’
In an effort to fend off reports’ questions about his expensive wrist watches, Beckham had recently made a habit of refusing to talk about anything besides football. Beckham got back on message Wednesday, while still dropping in another plug for Daniel Wellington.
‘But again, I’m just off of the watch topic,’ he said. ‘I’m going to leave it alone from now on. I’m strictly on football. Now you know, Daniel Wellington. That’s just the bottom line. I’m off it. I’m not talking about watches anymore. I’m done.’
ESPN cameras caught Beckham’s white and transparent watch before Monday’s game. Many said the timepiece looked just like the Richard Mille RM 56-02 Tourbillon Sapphire, one of 10 in the world that are valued at more than $2 million each.
Richard Mille spokesperson Laura Hughes said Monday the company was unsure if the watch was theirs, but in any case, the exposure was worth millions. A simple mention of the brand during the Browns’ game against the New York Jets on Monday Night Football was worth $2.46 million, Apex Marketing Group president Eric Smallwood told Fox Business.
‘The buzz attributed to Richard Mille surrounding Odell Beckham and the associated social and traditional media, since Week 1, has propelled the Swiss maker into the American sports conversation and has introduced a lot of people to the high-end timepiece brand,’ Smallwood said.
Beckham signed a five-year, $90 million deal with the New York Giants in 2018, but was later dealt to Cleveland. He’s made nearly $49 million in salary for his career, not including his endorsement deals with brands such as Nike, Head & Shoulders, EA Sports, and Dunkin Donuts.