OBJ tore his ACL on October 25, 2020 and had surgery to repair it on November 10, 2020.
He was a game-time decision in Week 1 which resulted in a scratch.
Stefanski said it was 50/50 OBJ would play. After warming up, Odell told him he “didn't feel like he could go a significant amount.” Stefanski added it’s “possible” OBJ plays Week 2. #Browns
— Jake Trotter (@Jake_Trotter) September 12, 2021
Browns head coach Kevin Stefanski is not waiting until game time on Sunday afternoon to make the decision on Week 2.
On Wednesday, he announced that Beckham will be out against the Texans.
#Browns coach Kevin Stefanski told reporters that WR Odell Beckham Jr won’t play on Sunday vs the #Texans. He tried to go last week and didn’t feel comfortable enough. Now, the coach takes it out of his hands a few days prior.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) September 15, 2021
Though fans are growing impatient, the Browns are being smart, and Stefanski is wise to make the decision early in the week.
There will be no game-time speculation, and the Browns offense can prepare this week without him as compared to preparing for both possibilities.
Need further convincing that the Browns are being smart in how they handle OBJ’s comeback?
Here are three reasons why they are.
3. This Is A Significant Injury
A torn ACL is a significant injury that can require up to 12 months post-surgery for a complete recovery.
Beckham is at 10 months post-surgery.
— boneandjointbr (@boneandjointbr) June 4, 2020
Rushing him back too early could cause an aggravation or re-injury that could set him back considerably.
Putting him out there before he is physically ready could result in him being lost for the entire 2021 season.
From what we have seen, he appears to have the speed and cutting ability, but he has not withstood contact yet.
Odell Beckham Jr. looked good at practice this week but didn’t take full reps, and hasn’t had any contact all summer – which is why Browns want to see how he feels pre-game today before making any decisions on his status vs. the Chiefs, per source. It will be about how OBJ feels.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) September 12, 2021
At this point, it is realistic to believe we will see him on the field sometime this season.
2. This Is The Beginning Of A Long 17-Game Season
The Browns are keenly aware that the regular season is a long haul.
From this year forward, it is even longer as one game has been added to the schedule for a total of 17 regular season games.
The Browns want a healthy Beckham late in the year when they are hopefully contending for the AFC North divisional title and a playoff berth.
I rather have Odell Beckham Jr. healthy in February than have him risk injury if he’s not 100% #Browns.
— Tyler Johnson (@T_johnson_TJ) September 15, 2021
1. His Peers With Same Injury Are Struggling
While everyone heals at a different rate, it is interesting to see how Denver Broncos wide receiver Courtland Sutton and New York Giants running back Saquon Barkley are progressing in their recoveries from the same injury.
Both Sutton and Barkley are on very similar timelines with their ACL injuries and surgeries.
Sutton and Barkley played in Week 1 with minimal results.
Courtland Sutton and Saquon Barkley both tore their acl 5 weeks before Odell Beckham did last year.
Courtland Sutton and Saquon Barkley both struggled in their season debut.
The Browns being careful with Odell Beckham is another example of their wisdom. pic.twitter.com/TuuJHG4TQH
— Nick Karns (@karnsies817) September 15, 2021
The Broncos used Sutton sparingly.
He ended the game with one catch out of three targets for 14 yards.
The Giants had a similar pattern with Barkley.
He had 10 rushes for 26 yards, and he caught one pass while on the field for 29 offensive snaps.
The Browns have plenty of depth at wide receiver to keep the fires burning on the offensive front until OBJ can return.
There are no conspiracy theories or setbacks associated with holding him out in Week 2.
The Browns have been clear since they lost last season’s Divisional playoff to the Kansas City Chiefs in January that they were eager to have a healthy Beckham back in 2021.
That’s what they continue to wait for before putting him back out on the field.