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Odell Beckham Jr. to miss fourth straight game with lingering leg injury

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- New York Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. will miss his fourth straight game with a quadriceps injury after being ruled out for Sunday's season finale against the Dallas Cowboys at MetLife Stadium.

It is a fitting end to a frustrating season that left Beckham "disappointed" after signing a lucrative new deal over the summer that made him the league's highest-paid wide receiver. He finishes the season with 77 catches for 1,052 yards and 6 touchdowns in 12 games -- all career lows for a season in which he didn't miss a majority of the year because of injury.

Beckham vowed to return better than ever next year and with a chip on his shoulder.

"The sky is the limit," Beckham said Friday. "I know that next year is going to be tough; tough on everybody that I play. That's just how I feel. That is just how I'm coming."

There was hope earlier this week that Beckham could return for Sunday's season finale, which could be quarterback Eli Manning's last with the team. Coach Pat Shurmur again insisted there was no setback despite hearing that Beckham was feeling better.

Beckham, however, did not practice this week and will remain sidelined because of an injury that has lingered since a Week 12 loss to the Eagles. Beckham was leg-whipped on the final play of that game by Philadelphia linebacker Kamu Grugier-Hill, who was fined $20,054 for his actions.

Beckham played the following week in a win over the Chicago Bears before missing the final four games. He said Friday it was a quad strain or pull that needs time to heal and is not expected to be a long-term problem.

"Obviously, not the way I want to end the season," Beckham said. "You train all offseason for these 16 games plus the chance to go to the playoffs. It's definitely not the way I want to end the season. I'm disappointed in myself, teammates, everybody. Just the whole community. This is not the way I wanted to end it."

After missing most of 2017 with a broken ankle, there didn't appear to be any noticeable falloff this season. Beckham was still explosive and dynamic at times, notching five 100-yard performances.

His decreased production seemed more of a product of the Giants' offensive struggles early this year. Manning threw just eight touchdown passes in the first eight games, and Beckham didn't get on the board until Week 5. He finished with four touchdown receptions in his final four games.

"He made plays. He helped us when he was in there," Shurmur said. "Unfortunately, he's missed the last month. So, just look forward to getting him back [next season]."

There clearly was frustration. Beckham said during an October interview with ESPN's Josina Anderson that he couldn't rule out Manning as the problem and admitted he wasn't fully content with his role.

The Giants (5-10) missed the playoffs for the second straight season. They have now failed to qualify for the postseason in four of their five seasons with Beckham on the roster.

There will be questions about whether Beckham and Manning will have another season together. Manning will turn 38 years old next week and has one year remaining on his contract. The Giants could get out of it without any substantial financial implications.

"I love Eli. ... He's the first quarterback I had in the league," Beckham said. "I threw with him [at the] Manning Camp, high school. There are a lot of things you want in life. You can't always get what you want.

"At the end of the day, I want him to be able to go home and talk trash to his brothers. When it's his time to go out, I want him to go out the right way. I want him to go out with the trophy so he can go home and, not rub it in their face, but [say] he's got three rings, they have two or whatever it is. That is what I want for him. That is how I want him to finish.

"It has nothing to do with me. It is not my call. I'm just a receiver, so it's above my pay grade."

Beckham, 26, signed a five-year deal during the offseason that could be worth up to $95 million. He was unable to follow it with his best season. He didn't make the Pro Bowl for just the second time in his five-year career.

"My goal is to bring my AAA-plus game next year," Beckham said. "Like I said, I don't care who is in front of me next year. I'm coming. That is the bottom line. It didn't go the way we wanted. It didn't go the way I wanted personally. But take it as a learning lesson and keep on moving."