After ESPN’s Adam Schefter first reported it was going to happen, Odell Beckham Jr.was officially suspended for one-game by the NFL following his on-the-field antics with Carolina Panthers cornerback Josh Norman in the Week 16 tilt.
Beckham was whistled for three personal fouls on Sunday, including a flag for a deliberate shot to Norman’s helmet long after the play was over. The Panthers standout corner spoke to ESPN’s Mike & Mike on Monday morning, saying:
All the concussion stuff that’s going around, they’re trying to prevent head-to-head, and if that wasn’t the blatant head to head, I don’t know what is. I hope the league office gets a chance to review the film and see what they can do, because players like that don’t deserve to be in the game. I mean, it’s ridiculous.
Beckham and Norman went at it from the opening whistle on Sunday afternoon and the league released a statement saying that the decision to eject a player can only me be by the on-field officials during a game.
“You never want to hurt your team like that, and I have learned throughout my life, always, second man gets caught,” Beckham said after the game. “It is just unfortunate.”
No matter what his intentions were on the field, Beckham will certainly be paying for them; literally. A first-offense unsportsmanlike conduct penalty runs at least $11,576. However, if the league deems Beckham’s actions as fighting the fine increases to $28,940 for a first offense.
The second-year wide receiver missed a wide-open opportunity on the Giants first drive before finishing with 76 yards and the game-tying touchdown. New York Giants coach Tom Coughlin said he would discuss Beckham’s behavior with him in private during his press conference following the loss.
Although it was always likely Beckham will be suspended, he can still appeal any league decision and continue to play until it is heard and ruled on. The Giants need to win out in order to maintain any chance at a playoff berth and can be eliminated if the Washington Redskins win on Saturday night.
In addition to news of his suspension, reports also surfaced on Monday that Beckham felt he had been taunted before the game, resulting in his on-field actions. The New York Daily News reported that Beckham felt threatened by the Carolina Panthers recent ritual of bringing a bat onto the sidelines. The team has used the bat regularly over the last few weeks as a symbol for making big plays. The wideout was also spotted exchanging barbs with Panthers players on the sidelines during warmups.