The Giants versus the Panthers had a huge buildup to it all week long. There were some rumblings that the Giants could potentially give the Panther some problems, at least with their offense. The matchup everyone talked about all week was wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. of the Giants versus talented Panthers cornerback Josh Norman. Both have done great things all season and many wanted to see who would have the upper hand against the other. And just like the competitors they are, both were in each other’s space all day. There were some physical confrontations and situations where both got tangled up and got physical. But the frustration and competitiveness of Odell Beckham Jr. went over the top on one play in the third quarter. Norman was matched up with Beckham Jr. and Norman used a swim move to get past Beckham Jr. and get to the football. Beckham Jr. kept running down the field for a bit and then turned around and ran as fast as he could at Norman. The talented receiver then launched himself into Norman head-first. The result was a dirty, viscous and unnecessary hit to Norman’s head. Of course there was a skirmish between both of them after this. Norman was not happy at all and went after Beckham Jr. the next play. Beckham seemingly began to lose it after he was not as effective as he usually is and then proceeded to lose his mind on the field. After the game, Norman addressed Beckham Jr. He was reported said this about Beckham Jr.: “F*** Him. He’s a b****! Screw him and his whole set up.” Norman also had some other things to say about Odell Beckham Jr. and all of them were not complementary of him there. Norman was not happy at all and it seemed like he lost a little respect for Beckham Jr. after that fiasco. There is no doubt that Beckham Jr. is a talented player, but he has to stop some of the foolishness.
Some may think this is the first time he has been involved in things, but this is far from the course. There was rumblings that he was doing some dirty things during the game when the Giants visited Buffalo. Bills linebacker Preston Brown was one of many that spoke of things Beckham Jr. did after the play. That was brushed aside by many people like it never happened. But after this most recent incident that many saw on national television, there has to be some that have changed their views on him. There is no doubt that Beckham Jr. is one of the most talented receivers out there. He makes the most difficult of catches with ease and can make defensive backs look silly. But he is also starting to build a reputation for himself that he does not want. During a couple games, he has done things like throw punches or cheap shots at the opponent. And so far in his career, that has not caught up to him. But one thing he may want to realize is that other NFL players are watching him. Of course some of those players could be jealous of the attention he receives. But there are some that do not approve of some of the things that he does.
Beckham Jr. already garners a lot of attention from opponents. With the great things that he does, plenty want to be the guy or team to shut him down. But with his most recent actions, he just painted a bright red target for many to see. All defensive players will be looking to get in his head like Josh Norman did. Although Beckham Jr. did score a touchdown and had a pretty successful day with his strong performance in the second half, he actually got lucky he was even there to do it. With that hit against Norman, he actually should have been tossed from the game per officials. And now not only does he have to deal with a potential large fine and suspension, but the known fact that defenders can get in his head and will be looking to mimic what Norman did against him. No one is saying that Norman is completely innocent in this matter at all. In fact, he did play a part in this one by getting in Beckham Jr.’s head and agitating him. But what game does that not happen in the NFL? Players talk trash and have altercations all the time on the field. We may not like it as fans, but it’s true. But when you start playing with player’s livelihood and trying to potentially take them out, that’s when a line is crossed. And Beckham Jr. crossed that line on Sunday.
The Panthers seemingly were not happy with him at all when speaking to the media. And honestly, they have a right to be. If any defensive player did anything near what Beckham Jr. did when he launched himself at Norman, then that defensive player would have been ejected from the game. Beckham Jr.’s act was not just dirty but it was selfish as well. He could have hurt his team in that game and been ejected and he is also has put himself in position to be suspended for their next game. With the Giants having a slim chance to win the division (of course they would need a ton of help to make that happen), Beckham Jr. being suspended would be a huge blow. And if he is suspended, he only has himself to blame. The antics of Beckham Jr. were out of line. Sure he was poked with, but there will be many that will definitely mess with him now in hopes of trying to take him out of his game. For his part, hopefully he learns from this situation and grows. Because if he does not learn from it, the outcome could be far worse than it was today with just personal foul penalties.