The season-ending knee injury to Rams receiver Robert Woods has created a greater expectation that new Rams receiver Odell Beckham Jr. will play on Monday night in San Francisco. On Saturday, however, Rams coach Sean McVay didn’t commit to Beckham suiting up.
“There’s a chance,” McVay said. “We’re going to see. You can see he’s a really sharp guy. We haven’t practiced yet [Saturday], but [I] like the look in his eye and we’ll see how he’s feeling, and we’ll see what that looks like as far as how we are able to utilize him if he’s able to go on Monday.”
He’s apparently feeling pretty good; Beckham’s name didn’t appear on Saturday’s injury report, despite a shoulder injury that was bothering him for several games in Cleveland.
Obviously, if Beckham plays, he won’t know the entire playbook.
“I think you have to take a modified approach,” McVay said. “Certainly, like I mentioned yesterday, I think it does help that you have some guys that are on the field with him that have such great ownership there. In essence, extension as a coaching staff — you look at Matthew Stafford, you look at Cooper Kupp. I really see [Tyler] Higbee in a lot of the same light. I think the game makes sense to Odell. He’s got a great feel. He’s got good football IQ. But again, it’s hard for me to say anything until we really get out there and do some different things and watch him move around. So, I’m excited about the opportunity to see what that looks like.”
Beckham, for his part, defers to McVay.
“That’s up to Coach,” Beckham said on whether he’ll play. “Right now, I’m trying to find ways to learn the playbook as fast as possible. If there’s something he needs me to do, I’m always willing to do whatever it is. So again, I guess we’ll see come Monday.”
Beckham added that he’s taking things “minute by minute, hour by hour.”
“I’ve never been to a different team in the middle of a season,” he said. “Guys have been through training camp. You’ve bonded, you’ve come together as a team. It’s definitely a different feeling, but we’re all pros and I just have to be a pro in this situation and find ways to get acclimated and get the plays and everything down as fast as I can and do the best to help this team find ways to win.”
He said he feels a greater sense of urgency to get ready to play, given the injury to Woods. The urgency will subside after Monday night; the Rams have a bye in Week 11 before heading to Green Bay in Week 12.