Odell Beckham Jr. played only seven games with the Browns this season. Beckham suffered an ACL tear which kept him out for the rest of the season.
How was Beckham’s 2020-21 season, and what does it bode for his future with the Cleveland Browns?
— Cleveland Browns (@Browns) January 26, 2021
Odell Beckham Jr. Missed Being On The Team
The Browns surprised everyone this year when they went 11-5 in the regular season, en-route to their first playoff berth since 2002.
They then shocked everyone even more when they upset the number three seed Pittsburgh Steelers, winning their first playoff game since 1994.
Beckham obviously wished he could have been a part of that success, but his injury derailed any chance he had of playing. This is what Beckham had to say after the Browns lost to the Chiefs in the divisional round:
— Mary Kay Cabot (@MaryKayCabot) January 20, 2021
His injury certainly impacted him mentally. However, how was Beckham doing prior to his injury, and what has his career been like since he joined the Cleveland Browns?
Has it panned out the way people expected it to, or has it been a big disappointment?
OBJ’s Time In Cleveland & What’s Next?
OBJ’s 2020-21 season was on pace to be his worst career year. Beckham was putting up a mere 45.6 yards per game which would have averaged out to only 730 receiving yards on the season.
That would have been by far his lowest total. Even his rookie campaign saw him average 108.8 yards per game. Clearly, there were issues with OBJ and his with this Browns team.
When the Browns traded for him, they had hoped that he would be able to form a dynamic duo with Jarvis Landry, but it hasn’t quite worked out like that so far.
In fact, there’s a case to be made that OBJ actually makes the Browns worse when he’s on the field.
When Beckham plays, Baker Mayfield has a passer rating of 79.6. That number jumps up to 116.6 when he’s not playing. Similarly, Mayfield’s touchdown to interception ratio with OBJ on the field is a mere 29-27.
However, without him it’s 8-1. Mayfield certainly plays more effectively without Beckham on the field as he’s more careful with the ball.
Mayfield doesn’t feel any pressure to target his star-wideout to get him involved in the game, and that leads to far fewer errant passes.
Even though this facts are present, Browns GM Andrew Berry still believes in the receiver. Here’s what Berry had to say regarding questions about OBJ’s future:
“I feel like this is a question that I have literally addressed every week since I took the job. Really at this point in time, I really do not see a difference.”
“Odell is one of the best receivers in the NFL…He is under contract for multiple years. Our focus with Odell is making sure that he recovers from the ACL tear. We want him to be healthy and ready to go next year.”
There will be a lot of speculation about where OBJ goes next, but for right now it looks like Cleveland is committed to him. It will also be interesting to see how OBJ plays after a devastating leg injury.