Browns: Baker Mayfield’s struggles with Odell Beckham Jr. remains about communication

Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield and receiver Odell Beckham Jr. have been putting in extra work together.main
Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield and receiver Odell Beckham Jr. have been putting in extra work together.main /

Baker Mayfield and Odell Beckham need to work on their communication

Baker Mayfield had a bad game on Sunday for the Browns, no two-ways about it. He missed at least six or seven wide-open passes. It happens, even the best had bad games. The problem, however, comes with the fact that Baker Mayfield appears to be an elite-level quarterback when Odell Beckham Jr. isn’t on the field. Yet, when Beckham is on the field there appear to be problems with Mayfield.

Mayfield may have inadvertently exposed the big issue the two are having and it all comes down to the one thing that every relationship ever has needed to function; communication.

While covering Mayfield’s post-game presser, Mary Kay Cabot (via quoted the young quarterback when he was asked about the issues that came up during the game.

"I told Odell this — the shot play late on the third down I didn’t communicate well enough about the type of ball that I’m trying to throw to him. He did a great job winning, so he’s digging for speed, and that’s on me for not communicating it. It’s one of those things where if I had communicated it, and we said early on in the year that things are better left said than not being said — and so you saw that right there, because that’s the type of dagger that you need to have on offense to put it away.’"

Considering how well Mayfield communicates with everyone else, and considering his relationships with Jarvis Landry and Rashard Higgins are top-notch, we have to start wondering why Mayfield can’t communicate with Beckham. It’s year three of these two being teammates.

What’s the deal?

Baker Mayfield and Odell Beckham have a terrible track record

Look at Mayfield without Beckham; elite quarterback stats and play. Look at Mayfield with Beckham; Ryan Leaf is laughing.

Clearly, there is a problem between the two. It’s been three years. We have three years’ worth of examples to cite. We have three years of bad play between the two to pull from. We have four years of non-anecdotal evidence to prove that Mayfield can play. We know that when Beckham isn’t on the field, and his receivers are doing the job, Mayfield can be among the most accurate passers in the league.

We’ve seen this. The issue isn’t on Mayfield but on this relationship. It’s not working. For whatever reason, it’s not working.

Beckham has got to get on the same page as Mayfield. There are no other issues in the passing game with anyone else, not like this. Mayfield clearly tried to tell Beckham what to look for but it fell on deaf ears, as Cabot wrote;

"Mayfield seemed to indicate he would’ve told Beckham he’d throw a stop if he got open, which was why the ball came up short."

We’ve seen this before this season with Anthony Schwartz. There is miscommunication to a very high degree or a failure to execute from these Browns’ receivers. NFL shows off and on places like ESPN talk about the offensive talent but it’s clear that it was over-rated outside of the running game. Donovan Peoples-Jones is a non-factor, the speedy rookies really aren’t making a difference, Jarvis Landry is hurt – again, and Beckham continues to be someone that quarterbacks can’t communicate with.

This could just be a lull, but there’s been a concern for some time that Beckham is a poor fit on this team and that he’s more name-brand than name-value at this point. Maybe Beckham and Mayfield find common ground, and also maybe we start looking at Nov. 2 in a whole new light.

dark. Next. Browns: Recapping the Vikings game with the 3 good and 3 bad of Week 4