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Fantasy Impact: Odell Beckham Jr. Signs with the Los Angeles Rams

All the pressure is on the Rams now, but what does the OBJ signing mean for fantasy?

Now that Odell Beckham Jr. has found a new home, is he ready to resurrect a career that has been going in the wrong direction for several years? There continues to be plenty of speculation as to why Beckham didn’t thrive with the Browns.

For fantasy managers that banked on Beckham making a comeback this season, the results have been horrific. Now that he’s a Ram, can he be fantasy relevant again?

The difference between Beckham’s first three seasons and the last five have been staggering. His first three seasons with the Giants saw Beckham record 288 receptions for 4,122 yards and 35 touchdowns. He averaged seven catches for 96 yards per game, averaging just less than one touchdown per game. In Cleveland, he started 28 games, with a per-game average of four catches for 57 yards. He’s scored a total of seven touchdowns since the Giants traded him -- just three in the last two years.

Now that he will play the rest of the 2021 season for the Rams, what can we expect from a fantasy perspective?

Let's first consider what he’s done this season. In his limited time with the Browns, Beckham averaged a meager 6.9 fantasy points per game (FPPG). That would put him at 47th among wide receivers -- ironically, tied with Saints WR Marquez Callaway.

Cleveland Browns wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. (13) runs out of bounds past Arizona Cardinals cornerback Byron Murphy (7) during the second half of an NFL football game at FirstEnergy Stadium, Sunday, Oct. 17, 2021, in Cleveland, Ohio.

More importantly, Beckham’s signing with the Rams is potentially devastating news for fantasy managers that have thrived with Cooper Kupp.

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Will Beckham make enough of a dent in the Rams’ attack to see Kupp’s record-breaking pace slow down just a bit? What about Robert Woods and Van Jefferson?

"It's potentially terrible for teams with Robert Woods, and Kupp might also take a hit," SI Fantasy analyst Jen Piacenti said. "Or, even more likely, he actually does nothing, just like in Cleveland and we had all this drama for nothing." 

Either way, it would appear Matthew Stafford is the biggest winner. Currently third among QBs in fantasy scoring, any decent contribution from Beckham could see Stafford give Tom Brady a run for QB1 the rest of the season.

"OBJ going to the Rams is great for Matthew Stafford, but that's about it," SI Fantasy analyst Michael Fabiano said. "He’ll be the third option in the Rams passing game behind Cooper Kupp and Robert Woods, making Van Jefferson waiver-wire fodder in most leagues. Beckham will be a volatile WR3 moving forward, and the same could be said of Woods. I don't expect much of a change in the value of Kupp, but overall it's not a great fantasy fit. I'd have preferred the Packers."

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