Following a thrilling win for the Rams and newly acquired quarterback Baker Mayfield over the favored Raiders on Thursday Night Football, Week 14 of the NFL’s regular season is underway, and the playoffs aren’t far off. With the postseason looming, Odell Beckham Jr., who remains a free agent following visits to New York, Buffalo and Dallas on the heels of a bizarre incident on a plane in Miami, has just four more weeks left to make his debut in the 2022-23 regular season.
Based on comments the star wideout, who hasn’t stepped on the field since tearing his ACL in Super Bowl LVI, made on Prime Video’s TNF in The Shop for Thursday Night Football, don’t hold your breath.
Beckham, 30, was asked if he’s made a decision about whether he’s ready to get on the field and where he wants to play. His answer: “I haven’t made the decision. I would like to be in a stable environment. Get up 6 a.m., leave at 6 p.m. for four weeks and then let’s talk about it. I’ve played football for a long time. I’m not saying I couldn’t step in and play regular season, but I don’t see the point. I really don’t. I’d rather play when that pressure’s on.”
Reading into Beckham’s answer a bit more following reports that the Cowboys had concerns about his recovery from his torn ACL and possibly believe it “appears his rehabilitation will extend into the postseason,” perhaps the reason he doesn’t see the point in playing during the regular season is that he won’t be healthy enough to do so. (Which, by the way, would be completely understandable considering he tore up his knee about 10 months ago.) That response would also explain why Beckham was willing to meet with the Cowboys, Giants and Buffalo but was unwilling to work out for any of his prospective employers. He may just not be ready to play.
If that is the case, it might be best for Beckham to table the idea of returning this season at all, playoffs or not, and take an entire offseason to get healthy ahead of what would be his age-31 season in the NFL. As it stands, no one is going to give him big money unless he proves he can still play, and the only way for him to do that is to get on the field. Since he’s either unwilling or unable to do that, playing the waiting game instead of playing football may be the thing to do.