CLEVELAND — Asked when was the last time he's seen Odell Beckham Jr. this healthy, happy and focused, Cleveland Browns wide receiver Jarvis Landry had to think all the way back to their time together in Baton Rouge.
"Probably college," Landry said, referencing his time playing alongside Beckham at LSU from 2011-2013. "Last year he was dealing with a major injury that obviously he had to have surgery and things like that. Coming into a new system, new team, all of these things and I think that weighs on you. It weighs on anybody."
Beckham, for his part, didn't dispute Landry's assessment.
"I'd probably agree with that," Beckham said. "Coming from college into the league, it's just a completely different life. I feel like college was an intro and it was just right before the social media era and all that stuff so it's just a different day and age now and I think this is probably one of the best spots I've been in."
While Beckham became known for his 1,000-watt smile during his rise to NFL stardom with the New York Giants, the 3-time Pro Bowl receiver didn't have much to smile about during his first season in Cleveland. Despite the Browns entering 2019 with lofty expectations, the team fell well short of its goals as Beckham turned in one of the least productive seasons of his NFL career.
As Landry alluded to, there was also the matter of Beckham's personal health, as the 2014 NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year suffered a sports hernia in the preseason that affected his play throughout the year. In January, the 27-year-old underwent core-muscle surgery to repair the injury and has since insisted that he's the healthiest he's felt in quite some time.
Through the first four weeks of the 2020 season, it would be tough to argue otherwise, especially following a performance against the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday in which he totaled 154 yards (81 receiving, 73 rushing) and three touchdowns, including a 37-yard throw from Landry and a game-clinching 50-yard touchdown run.
With that, the Browns enter Sunday's matchup vs. the Indianapolis Colts laying claim to a 3-1 record -- the franchise's best start since 2001. Beckham, meanwhile, appears to have re-established himself as one of the most dynamic -- and happiest -- players in the NFL, a far cry from how he would have been described just a season ago.
"This year, his body has kind of calmed his mind down from all of the things that he had going on," Landry said. "That he can go out here and perform at a high level each and every time he takes the field."