Troy Aikman: Matthew Stafford already feeling ‘pressure’ from Odell Beckham
Odell Beckham Jr. was part of a blowout loss in his first game with the Los Angeles Rams on Monday night. The team is hoping better days lay ahead, but Troy Aikman sounds quite skeptical.
During an appearance on 96.7 The Ticket in Dallas on Tuesday, Aikman said he wonders if the big trades the Rams recently made “shook the chemistry and foundation” of their team. He got that impression while watching them in their 31-10 loss to the San Francisco 49ers.
“You bring in just one (new) player into the locker room, it can change the dynamic of a locker room,” Aikman said, as transcribed by Mark Lane of The Texans Wire.
Aikman added that bringing in players like Beckham and Von Miller leads to other starters losing their jobs. He said that can create “cliques,” which is “what I sensed last night.”
You could argue that Aikman is jumping to conclusions too quickly, but he didn’t stop there. He also pointed out how Matthew Stafford threw an interception on the opening drive on a pass intended for Beckham. He speculated that Stafford could already have been feeling some of the pressure that Baker Mayfield felt with the Cleveland Browns.
“I think Matthew now feels some of the pressure that maybe Baker Mayfield felt of, ‘Hey, we’ve got to get this guy involved, or he’s in the game right now because he’s going to take his deep route and I’ve got to find a way to get this ball in his hands because that’s why he’s playing on this play,'” Aikman said. “It’s not good and it’s not good playing quarterback when you feel pressure to get the ball to one particular player. It just doesn’t work.”
That’s a lot to take away from Beckham’s first game with the Rams. In addition to trying to incorporate Beckham into the playbook, Stafford and the Rams were also playing without Robert Woods, who tore his ACL in practice last week. They will need some time to adjust to that, too.
One Browns player seemingly issued a warning for the Rams after they signed Beckham. It sounds like Aikman agrees.
Photo: Nov 21, 2019; Houston, TX, USA; Dallas Cowboys former quarterback Troy Aikman attends the NFL game between the Houston Texans and the Indianapolis Colts at NRG Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports