NFL Browns drop star receiver Beckham on 29th birthday

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NFL star receiver Odell Beckham Jr. has parted ways with the Cleveland Browns, the team announced Friday (AFP/Nick Cammett)

NFL star receiver Odell Beckham Jr. and the Cleveland Browns parted ways on Friday after the club was unable to make a trade deal before this week's transfer deadline.

On Beckham's 29th birthday, Browns general manager Andrew Berry said in a statement the team would release Beckham, who joined the club in 2019 after five seasons with the New York Giants.

"After careful consideration, internal discussions and conversations with Odell and his representation, we've determined that it is in the best interest of all parties involved that Odell no longer play for the Cleveland Browns," Berry said.

"We appreciate all his efforts and contributions while in Cleveland, but we've just reached a point where it is best that we move forward as a team without Odell."

The Browns are reworking Beckham's contract, which had $7.5 million remaining, to make it easier for a team to claim him off waivers, a process that won't be completed until next week.

"We are finalizing the process of granting Odell his release and we wish him well as he continues his career," Berry said.

Beckham departs Cleveland with 114 catches in 29 games for 1,586 yards and seven touchdowns and eight rushes for 96 yards and one touchdown. In six games this season, Beckham made 17 catches for 232 yards.

On Tuesday, Beckham's father posted a video on social media showing Beckham open on pas routes but Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield not throwing to him.

Such distractions have made him a difficult player for teams to consider even with his receiving talent.

Beckham, who was the Browns most targeted receiver this season, was kept out of practice the past two days as the Browns (4-4) debated his fate once no trade materialized.

Beckham suffered a knee injury last season but has not played a major role in the team's offense since changes in 2020, timing patterns negating much of the skill that made him a star in New York.

The Giants traded him to Cleveland after five years and 5,476 yards with 44 touchdowns with three Pro Bowl seasons to launch his NFL career.

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