CLEVELAND — Editor's note: the video in the player above is from a previous story.
In the two weeks since he last played a game for the Cleveland Browns, Odell Beckham Jr. hasn't said much about his departure from the team. But ahead of his debut with the Los Angeles Rams, the three-time Pro Bowl wide receiver shared at least some of his side of the story.
Serving as the sideline reporter for the matchup between the Rams and San Francisco 49ers on Monday night, ESPN's Lisa Salters revealed that she spoke to Beckham about his breakup with the Browns during a phone call the previous day. And while Beckham largely remained mum on the subject, he did insist that he hadn't forced his way out of Cleveland, as many believe he did.
"I spoke to Odell Beckham Jr. on the phone last night, he told me he didn't really want to talk about what happened in Cleveland and what led to his release there," Salters said. "But he did say that every detail was crazy to him, he said, 'I don't have words for it. It stinks. It was never intended.' And he said he never could have envisioned any of it. Beckham said he doesn't blame anyone, he enjoyed his time in Cleveland, which led to the handwritten goodbye letter to the city that he posted on social media."
Beckham's departure from Cleveland came after nearly a week's worth of drama after he reportedly requested a trade following the Browns' Week 8 loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers. Hours ahead of the NFL Trade Deadline two days later, Beckham's father, Odell Beckham Sr., posted an 11-minute and 24-second long video clip of quarterback Baker Mayfield missing his son on various throws throughout the 2021 season to his verified Instagram account. Additionally, Beckham's friend and NBA superstar LeBron James took to Twitter to encourage the Browns to part ways with the 2014 NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year.
"OBJ will show again why he’s special. WR1 #FreeOBJ," James tweeted.
After being unable to find a deal to trade Beckham, the Browns excused the LSU product from their Wednesday and Thursday practices. On Friday, Nov. 5 -- Beckham's 29th birthday -- the team officially announced that it would release him, although the move ultimately didn't occur until the following Monday.
After going unclaimed on waivers, Beckham agreed to a one-year contract with the Rams. In his debut with Los Angeles on Monday, he caught two passes for 18 yards as the Rams lost 31-10 to the 49ers.