Friday, January 21

As Odell Beckham Jr. thrives with the Rams, it sure doesn’t seem like he was the problem for the Browns.



Justin Jefferson had a message for Odell Beckham Jr.’s foes after the Rams’ 30-23 win over the Cardinals on “Monday Night Football.”

The Vikings catcher and LSU product wants everyone to admit that Beckham “wasn’t the problem” during his difficult tenure with the Browns.

In fact, Jefferson is right. Beckham wasn’t the problem, and he’s showing it as he goes through Los Angeles.

MORE: Troy Aikman’s Ridiculous Take On Odell Beckham Jr.’s Rams Debut

Arguably, Beckham had his best performance of the season in the Rams’ Week 14 30-23 win over the Cardinals. He caught six passes for 77 yards and a touchdown as he helped catalyze the Rams’ offense in the first half.

The score was a Beckham beauty. He ran a perfect route near the goal line and beat the Cardinals defense on the inside with a good stuttering move to open up the Rams scoring. He scored his third game in a row with a touchdown.

Unbelievably, Beckham now has as many touchdowns in four games with the Rams as he did in his last 13 games with the Browns in the last two years. His overall production in Los Angeles has nearly outpaced his job in Cleveland this year despite playing two fewer games with the Rams.

Odell Beckham Jr. Games goals Receptions Receiving yards Receive TD Yards per reception
With browns 6 3. 4 17 232 0 13.6
With rams 4 25 fifteen 204 3 13.6

If you exclude his first game with the Rams, during which Beckham played just 15 plays, he is averaging 4.3 receptions for 62 yards and one touchdown per game for the Rams. That translates to 1,054 yards and 17 TDs in a 17-game season. Certainly, the Rams will take those numbers for a No. 2 receiver.

It’s also worth noting that Beckham’s average yards per catch is the same with the Rams as it is with the Browns. What does that mean? It means that while it may seem like he’s making more plays for the Rams, his catches with the Browns had a similar impact. They just weren’t that frequent, as Baker Mayfield didn’t target it as much as they never developed chemistry.

SUTELAN: Will Cooper Kupp break the receiving record for an NFL season?

The Rams’ offense certainly looks better with Beckham, especially since they needed a replacement for Robert Woods. What about the Browns offense? Well, they certainly haven’t improved with Beckham’s release.

Statistical category With Beckham Since releasing Beckham
Points per game 20.5 19
Passing yards per game 211.3 180.6
Pass TDs per game one 1.4

It’s fair to note that the Browns played two additional games without Beckham to start the year, and when you factor that into, they are averaging 22.1 points per game, 200.8 yards and 1.1 TDs without Beckham. While his score may be a bit better overall without Beckham, it’s still hard to say that he was the problem with the Browns’ offense. They were certainly a more efficient air strike when he was around.

And while Beckham was caught up in a drama inside the Browns locker room that heated up when his father posted a video criticizing Mayfield on social media, it certainly hasn’t been a discontent in the Rams locker room. In fact, he has already served as a valuable mentor and source of encouragement to second-year catcher Van Jefferson, as Jourdan Rodrigue detailed in Athletic.

“I was really down after the (San Francisco) game,” Jefferson said. “Odell sent me this long list of people who were just talking bad about him and how he could be better, and he said, ‘Look, bro, I’ve’ been there, I’ve been through it before. Don’t stop at this. ‘ So that really encouraged me, that he did that. “

Since that game, Jefferson has totaled 11 receptions for 192 yards and three touchdowns.

MORE: Why OBJ Picked The Rams Over Other Potential Suitors

It’s only fair that the Browns wanted to start over as Beckham and Mayfield struggled to connect, but it’s also clear that Beckham wasn’t the root of the problem. After all, Mayfield cryptically alluded to “inside things” that are plaguing Cleveland in an interview with NFL Network’s Kurt Warnrer.

So Cleveland has yet to do some soul-searching as they look to earn a playoff spot in the packed AFC. Meanwhile, it appears the Rams have found something in Beckham and will see if he can stay warm as they battle for the NFC West title.




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