Odell Beckham Jr. hasn't lived up to expectations since he was traded to the Cleveland Browns two years ago. Injuries and a decline in production had led to increased speculation regarding Beckham's future in Cleveland, not just with the trade deadline at hand, but for after the 2021 season.
While Beckham Jr. has struggled to put up numbers on the field, his father believes quarterback Baker Mayfield has been the culprit toward the decline in production. Odell Beckham Sr. posted a video on Instagram Monday highlighting Mayfield failing to find Beckham on certain routes and not targeting Beckham on plays, putting the Browns quarterback under the bus.
Beckham Sr. has defended his son in the past, but this is the first time he's spoken up since his Beckham Jr. was traded to the Browns in 2019. A former running back at LSU, the senior Beckham criticized New York Giants owner John Mara months prior to his son being traded to the Browns.
It all came on the same day Browns head coach Kevin Stefanski addressed Beckham's struggles this season. Beckham had just one catch for six yards in Sunday's loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers and has only 17 catches for 232 yards and zero touchdowns in six games this season.
"I would tell you first and foremost, I need to do a better job. I really do," Stefanski said on Beckham having just one target in the loss. "I need to make sure that I put him in position to make some plays, and I did not do a good enough job certainly yesterday.
"Having said that, he gets a lot of attention from the defense. There were a bunch of plays where the safety is cheating to him, and that opens up opportunities for other guys. I think of an early third down that we had where the post safety stayed to the boundary side because he was cheating towards Odell, and we hit a big play to (WR) Jarvis (Landry). His effect on our offense is there, but I do need to do a better job of making sure that the ball makes its way into his hands."
The Browns have no plans to trade Beckham, per ESPN's Dianna Russini, yet it's unclear if any team would be willing to take on the remaining two years and $30 million on his contract (after the 2021 season). Beckham has just 114 catches for 1,586 yards and seven touchdowns in 29 games with the Browns, averaging 13.9 yards per catch.
Even with the injuries and struggles in the offense, Stefanski still sees a dynamic player in Beckham.
"Yeah, I do based off of what I see from him each week. Again, I just think he can affect the game," Stefanski said. "That is where I am really making sure that myself and coaches we have to put him in position to make some plays."