Odell Beckham Jr’s next chapter is still uncertain as free agency plans are in full swing. The biggest question on everyone’s mind is where one of the league’s premiere receivers will start his 2023 season.
Odell Beckham Jr’s Next Chapter Post Injury
Beckham’s Bump In the Road
Things have been challenging for the veteran receiver as he prepares for his 10th NFL season. Fresh off back-to-back ACL tears, the latter of which caused him to miss the 2022 season, the biggest concern for organizations is Beckham’s ability to stay injury free and determine how much he still has in his tank.
Beckham’s first ACL tear came midway through the 2020 season. Suiting up for the Cleveland Browns, the wideout played seven games, averaging 13.9 yards per catch while recording 319 yards with three touchdowns before being sidelined for the remainder of the season.
Beckham returned to the field in 2021 with the Browns, but didn’t last the full season in Cleveland. After a falling out between Beckham and quarterback Baker Mayfield, the team released Beckham and he spent the back half of the year with the Los Angeles Rams.
An Unexpected Vacation
Following the 2021 postseason and Super Bowl victory, Beckham once again would spend his offseason in recovery. In the ensuing offseason, Beckham stated, “really played the whole back half of the season without an ACL and won a Super Bowl”.
Krazy thought … really played the whole back half of the season without an acl, and won a super bowl! God doesn’t misss, i swea
— Odell Beckham Jr (@obj) July 3, 2022
Concern about the success of the original surgery was confirmed after Odell Beckham Jr injured himself a second time and, rather than trying to rush a recovery, he missed the 2022 NFL season.
With his contract expiring in Los Angeles and another surgery underway, NFL teams have been keeping their eyes on the development of Beckham and rationalizing whether or not he is worth the risk.
As a top receiver in the league, it’s unquestionable that Beckham can help any organization out on the field. However, a double ACL tear in the NFL is a quick pass to early retirement for most players.
Looking Ahead to 2023
Over the course of his 10-year career, Beckham has always been in the conversation as a top threat at the wideout position.
With 96 games played, the veteran receiver has recorded 531 receptions for 7,367 yards with 56 touchdowns. His only season under 200 yards was in 2021 for half the time spent with the Browns and he finished with 305 during the later half with the Rams.
The numbers don’t lie. If he can find his pre-injury form, Beckham still has the ability to transcend on the field and create opportunities for any ball club. The top three teams most likely to land Beckham are the New York Jets, Buffalo Bills, and Dallas Cowboys, although franchises like the Ravens, Chiefs, and Chargers could certainly land him as well.
Odell Beckham Jr Returns
Beckham recently completed a free agency workout in front of 12-14 teams in Arizona and things look like they are back to normal for the receiver.
In typical fashion, Beckham could be seen making quick cuts with bursts of speed almost identical to his early seasons with the New York Giants. As expected, Beckham would also have a few flashy one-handed grabs during his workout that impressed onlookers.
While a decision hasn’t been made final, it is likely that Beckham will be picked up soon. He seems to be in positive spirits and more confident in his recovery this time around vs his 2021 season. Analysts have said that he looks sharp and ready to go so we will see what the future holds for the one-hand wonder.
Main Photo: Kirby Lee – USA Today Sports