BEREA, Ohio (AP)Odell Beckham Jr.’s comeback is down to days, but the Browns star wide receiver didn’t commit to playing Sunday against the Chicago Bears.
”We’ll see,” Beckham said, shrugging his shoulders when pressed about his status for Cleveland’s third game.
Beckham hasn’t played since suffering a season-ending knee injury last October in Cincinnati, prematurely ending his third season with the Browns.
The flashy 28-year-old spoke to reporters Thursday for the first time in nearly a year to explain the challenge of overcoming his latest injury while also giving vague answers about when he’ll be back on the field.
”Everything is going smooth, just been part of the progression the entire time, just working my way back into it,” said Beckham, who was full-go in practice Wednesday. ”Everything feels good, so just taking it day by day.”
Beckham said after his operation, the original plan was for him to target 11 months for his return to the field. He’s at 10 1/2 months, but still not rushing things.
”Whenever it is, I know I’ll be excited,” he said. ”I’ve worked extremely hard to not only get back but improve and to try and be better than I ever have been, so I’m definitely looking forward to it.
”It’s been a long time. It’s been a long time in putting yourself back together and I’ve had my entire team around me though the whole process, great support so and it’s going to be special. It’s been a long time.”
Beckham was close to playing in the season opener at Kansas City and he was ”itching” to face the Chiefs before he was a late scratch after warming up.
Beckham had to watch last season as the Browns made it to the playoffs without him.
Cleveland could use him now after the team was forced to put five-time Pro Bowl receiver Jarvis Landry on injured reserve earlier this week with a sprained knee. Beckham and Landry are close friends and former college teammates.
Beckham said Landry’s injury hasn’t affected his timeline.
”It didn’t speed anything up,” he said. ”He’s a guy who can’t be replaced – his energy, his presence on this team as a leader, captain on this team, you can’t replace him. Just wishing him to get back as fast as possible. This a dream come true for us.”
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