CLEVELAND (AP) — Cleveland Browns star wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. will miss the rest of the season after tearing a knee ligament during Sunday’s 37-34 win at Cincinnati.
Beckham’s second season in Cleveland ended when his left leg buckled while running to try and make a tackle after Baker Mayfield’s first pass was intercepted by Bengals cornerback Darius Phillips.
An MRI taken Monday in Cleveland confirmed the diagnosis of a torn anterior cruciate ligament.
On what became his final play of 2020, Beckham was chasing Phillips down the sideline when his leg got twisted awkwardly. He immediately grabbed it, was taken directly to the Browns locker room and didn’t return.
The Browns (5-2) played well without Beckham, who for all his talent hasn’t been able to make a strong connection with Mayfield since arriving in a blockbuster trade from the New York Giants before last season. Beckham played most of 2019 with a core muscle injury that required offseason surgery.
After Beckham went out Sunday, Mayfield completed 21 consecutive passes and threw five TD passes — matching a franchise record — as the Browns outlasted the Bengals.
Mayfield was also without injured running back Nick Chubb, tight end Austin Hooper and receiver Jarvis Landry played a broken rib. But the third-year QB had one of his best games by making plays with rookie tight end Harrison Bryant (two TDs), Rashard Higgins (six catches) and rookie Donovan Peoples-Jones, who entered the game without a catch and grabbed Mayfield’s winning TD pass with 11 seconds left
Cleveland, which hasn’t made the playoffs since 2002, will have to go the rest of the way without Beckham, who will turn 28 on Nov. 5. He had 23 catches for 319 yards and three touchdowns this season. He also scored on a 50-yard touchdown run.