Following Sunday afternoon’s thriller in East Rutherford, NJ between the New York Giants and the Carolina Panthers, much of the conversation was surrounding Giants wideout Odell Beckham Jr. The 2nd year star came to blows with Panthers cornerbacks Josh Norman and Cortland Finnegan, drawing three personal foul penalties throughout the game.
Though both Norman and Finnegan earned penalties as well, Beckham’s actions were deemed excessive by viewers, as well as NFL VP of Football Operations Merton Hanks, who ruled that his “actions put his opponents at unnecessary risk of injury.” Namely running across the field to dish a helmet-to-helmet hit on Norman at the conclusion of a play that neither was involved in. Whether it was throwing punches or just overall tussling, things were definitely taken to another level.
Odell Beckham alleges that a Panthers practice squad player was on the field during pregame warm-ups and threateningly pointed a bat at him. The Panthers refute that claim, stating that the bat has always been a motivational symbol for the franchise this season. The New York Giants also told ESPN‘s Ian O’Connor that some Giants players overheard Panthers players hurling expletives and anti-gay slurs at Beckham, which the source believes set up all of the tension up prior to the game.
The one game suspension was handed down late Monday and Beckham has already appealed, but his appeal will not be heard until Wednesday (December 23). Needing to win both of their remaining two games, while needing NFC East leading Washington Redskins to lose both of theirs to even have a chance at the playoffs, losing Beckham for one game would be the final blow to a disappointing season.