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How Odell Beckham Jr. will fit into the Rams' offense, plus what is happening to the Ravens?

CBS Sports logo CBS Sports 11/12/2021 Zachary Pereles
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Congratulations, everyone! You've made it to Friday. Give yourself a pat on the back -- especially if you somehow started the Dolphins D/ST on your fantasy team -- and get ready for a huge weekend of sports ahead.

Let's take a look at the biggest storylines right now.

Good morning to everyone but especially to...

ODELL BECKHAM JR. AND THE LOS ANGELES RAMS

Out in Los Angeles, the rich got richer as the Rams added Odell Beckham Jr. to what is an absolutely loaded roster. It's the latest move to signal they are championship-or-bust, according to our NFL expert Bryan DeArdo:

  • DeArdo:"Beckham is joining a Rams team that is going all-in on this season. The Rams, who are currently 7-2 and one game back of the Cardinals for the AFC West division lead, recently traded to acquire future Hall of Fame pass rusher Von Miller. Miller will make his Los Angeles debut on Sunday while joining a defense that includes three-time Defensive Player of the Year Aaron Donald and All-Pro cornerback Jalen Ramsey."

Everyone on Twitter -- LeBron James included -- weighed in when news broke, but now the question is how it all comes together. The Rams' offense is averaging 29 points per game this season -- third in the NFL -- and Matthew Stafford has developed a strong relationship with Cooper Kupp. How strong? Kupp is the first player with 1,000+ receiving yards and 10+ receiving touchdowns through nine games since Jerry Rice in 1990.

The Rams also have a more-than-capable No. 2 wide receiver in Robert Woods and a running back who ranks top-10 league-wide in touches in Darrell Henderson Jr.

Here's DeArdo on how OBJ will fit into the Rams offense:

  • DeArdo: "The best-case scenario for Los Angeles is that Beckham can do for them what Antonio Brown did for the Buccaneers during his first season in Tampa Bay. Brown not only complemented the Buccaneers' receiving corps during Tampa Bay's Super Bowl run, he also served as Tom Brady's primary option on several occasions. Brown capped off his first season with the Buccaneers with a touchdown catch in Super Bowl LV."

Honorable mention

  • File this in the "you have to see it to believe it" category. UC Riverside's JP Moorman II nailed a 70-foot buzzer beater to stun Arizona State late last night. It was the first time the Highlanders have ever beaten the Sun Devils. And no, I cannot explain why Arizona State tried to steal the inbounds pass. Just enjoy the video.

And not such a good morning for...

THE BALTIMORE RAVENS -- AND EVERYONE WHO STAYED UP TO WATCH THEM LOSE

Thursday night's contest between the Ravens and Dolphins -- eventually won by Miami 22-10 -- was one of the strangest games I've seen in a while. I guess that makes it a perfect Thursday night game: one we all regret staying up for (and this particular one lasted FOREVER).

Here are some "highlights":

  • This was the fifth game this season in which neither team scored a touchdown in the first half.
  • Jacoby Brissettstarted the game for Miami as Tua Tagovailoa continues to deal with a fractured finger. Brissett appeared to get injured in the third quarter but then looked like he was actually ready to re-enter the game. Instead, Miami head coach Brian Flores inserted Tagovailoa. Tagovailoa wasn't healthy enough to start, but a few hours later he was healthy enough to play. I'm still confused.
  • The undeniable big highlight of this game was Dolphins offensive lineman Robert Huntcatching a screen pass, making a defender miss and diving toward the end zone. The only problem? He wasn't an eligible receiver. A play that did not count (and resulted in a penalty) was far and away the most memorable part of the game, which should tell you about how this game went.

I'll certainly give credit where credit is due: The Dolphins' defense stepped up in a major way, playing up to its preseason expectations. Tagovailoa played well, despite his mysterious injury. In a span of five days, Miami has gone from 1-7 to 3-7.


Video: What type of impact will OBJ make with the Rams? (NBC Sports)

Replay Video

But make no mistake, this was a missed opportunity for the Ravens, who were coming off an impressive comeback this past weekend against Minnesota. Does anyone want the No. 1 seed in the AFC?

Pete Prisco's NFL picks for Week 10 💸

Pete Prisco is here to make you money, plain and simple. Entering Week 10, he was 15 games over .500 against the spread this year, sporting a 74-59-3 record.

Here are his picks for two of the top games this week:

  • Browns at Patriots: "The Browns are playing back-to-back road games and put a lot into winning a big division game last week at Cincinnati. The Patriots are back home for the first time in three weeks after winning two road games. Their defense is playing much better and they will do a solid job of putting the game on Baker Mayfield with the possibility Nick Chubb is out. Mac Jones will do enough on offense to get the victory. Pick: Patriots 27, Browns 21"

  • Seahawks at Packers: "Russell Wilson is back for the Seahawks and Aaron Rodgers should be. That will make this a fun offensive game to watch. The Packers defense, though, is getting better by the week. I think they will play well after losing last week and Rodgers will have a field day in his return. Pick: Packers 31, Seahawks 24"

Cam Newton is back with the Panthers 🏈

No need to photoshop a jersey this time: Cam Newton is returning to the Carolina Panthers on a one-year deal. Newton spent the first nine seasons of his career with Carolina, rewriting the franchise's record book before spending the 2020 season with the Patriots. He was released this offseason after Mac Jones won the starting quarterback job in New England.

The Newton addition comes just days after starter Sam Darnold headed to IR with a fractured scapula. P.J. Walker will get the start this weekend at Arizona, but Newton could take over as early as Week 11, when Washington -- led by Newton's former coach in Carolina, Ron Rivera -- comes to town.

As far as fantasy implications go, Newton does have some upside and he could help those around him, writes our fantasy expert Chris Towers.

  • Towers:"He has plenty of appeal on his own -- his rushing makes him a potential top-12 QB on its own -- but if Newton can just be somewhere north of abysmal, that's an upgrade over what the Panthers have right now."

Is Rob Manfred's job in danger? The answer is... ⚾

No. Rob Manfred's job isn't in danger, even as MLB barrels toward a lockout starting Dec. 1. That's when the current collective bargaining agreement expires.

There is one thing that Manfred could do that may hurt his job safety, though, writes our MLB expert Dayn Perry:

  • Perry: "The only way he could lose his job is by losing money for owners. ... and the idea that he'd force through an agreement that's not to the liking of most owners is far-fetched in the extreme (he also has an extensive background in labor negotiations, including during his time as one of Selig's lieutenants). You can bet anything Manfred does toward advancing an agreement will have the imprimatur of the owners upon it."

What we're watching this weekend

Friday

World Cup qualifying: USA vs Mexico, 9:10 p.m. on ESPN 2 | Our soccer guru Roger Gonzalez has three things to watch ahead of a pivotal World Cup qualifier.

🏀 No. 4 Villanova at No. 2 UCLA (-4.5), 11:30 p.m. on ESPN 2 | It's a late tip but a great matchup between two of the nation's best teams.

Saturday

🏈 No. 8 Oklahoma (-5.5) at No. 13 Baylor, 12 p.m. on FOX | The Big 12's College Football Playoff chances may lie in the hands of the Sooners, who could use a quality win here to boost their resume.🏈No. 1 Georgia at Tennessee, 3:30 p.m. on CBS | The Bulldogs look to finish SEC play undefeated for the first time since 1982.

🏈 No. 19 Purdue at No. 4 Ohio State (-21), 3:30 p.m. on ABC | Purdue has already beaten No. 2 Iowa and No. 3 Michigan State this season. Is No. 4 Ohio State next?

🏀 No. 5 Texas at No. 1 Gonzaga (-7.5), 10:30 p.m. on ESPN 2 | Texas has never beaten an AP No. 1 team.

Sunday

🏈 Chiefs (-2.5) at Raiders, 8:20 p.m. on NBC | All four AFC West teams are over .500. This is a big one for both Kansas City and Las Vegas.

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