LA Rams must re-sign Odell Beckham Jr. if just on principle

Super Bowl 56 Cincinnati Bengals Vs La Rams
Super Bowl 56 Cincinnati Bengals Vs La Rams /

Here we are, fans of the defending NFL Champion LA Rams, and there seems to be a waning euphoria. Of course, it was always bound to happen. The LA Rams, like all of the other 31 NFL teams, have gone through their annual transformation that includes changes to the coaching staff and to the players on the roster.

But there is something about the principles of a team, those binding shared values that hold true on and off the football field. At the end of each day, good or bad, there is a solace in the knowledge that you remained true to that which you most believe to be true.

Now the question is, how committed are the LA Rams to their own principles? Sometimes the team seems very committed, as illustrated when the team upped the ante for Aaron Donald. Other times, the team seems to be taking a less admirable path, as in the occasions for the team to trade away veteran DL Michael Brockers and WR Robert Woods for virtually no compensation as a result of that trade.

LA Rams at the crossroads

And so, the LA Rams stand once more at the crossroads. Restocking a roster is a complex matter, and the needs of paying players tempered by the limits of the NFL salary cap are far more involved and intricate than I can ever do justice in a single article. So I won’t try to do so here. But I will point out the fact that the LA Rams succeeded in 2021 thanks to the heroics of WR Odell Beckham Jr.

Now OBJ is looking for a new contract, and I believe that the ball is now in the LA Rams’ court. We can guess that the major hold-up was getting Aaron Donald to re-sign a new deal. Now that has been accomplished, as well as signing up all eight rookies. That leaves a new deal for WR Cooper Kupp to do. And then?

Hopefully, OBJ returns. Why? Don’t the LA Rams have Allen Robinson, Cooper Kupp, and Van Jefferson? Of course. But we’re talking the optics of a player who was injured in the Super Bowl trying to help his team win appearing to be left behind after doing so. If part of the plan was to place the LA Rams organization in a positive light by taking care of Aaron Donald in the latest reworked contract, then the inability to find a roster spot or sufficient funding to re-sign Odell Beckham Jr. negates all of that positive mojo.

I’m not saying that it is reprehensible or even a bad judgment call. And this is not trying to summarize how the fans may view events. But for players, the guys who put it on the football field, this is something that gets noticed. Players take care of teams that take care of players.

Do the LA Rams need OBJ to be successful in 2022? Probably not. But to remain true to who they are, the LA Rams need to re-sign OBJ. In the end, those who fail to stand for something stand for nothing. The team found a singular focus that brought success despite challenges. Bringing back OBJ is just one more challenge.

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