There was one question on the minds of NFL fans, and specifically Giants fans, after the Panthers defeated Big Blue 38-35: what in the hell was Odell Beckham Jr. thinking? The superstar wide receiver for the Giants was not only held catch-less throughout the entire first half of the game but he also received three personal foul penalties during his one-on-one battle with cornerback Josh Norman. It got so bad at one point, Coughlin considered taking Beckham out of the game even though he broke through with six grabs for 76 yards and a game-tying touchdown in the second half.
One day later, we have a bit clearer of an idea on what could’ve been on Beckham’s mind and it seems that gay slurs and threatening gestures with baseball bats during pre-game are at the forefront.
“In pregame warmups, at least one Panthers official, and possibly more, carried black baseball bats on to the field and were motioning with them towards Odell Beckham Jr. while making comments to him,” according to all-knowing Football sorcerer Adam Schefter. “Norman later grabbed the black bat and was swinging it in pregame warmups – which, by the way, an NFL Films camera captured. Beckham, according to another source, felt threatened and it helped put him in a certain frame of mind. It does not excuse what he did during the course of the game, but it does explain what led up to the battle that still is the talk of the league today.”
In the Instagram videos below, you can clearly see Panthers players walking around with baseball bats even though those within the Panthers organization are denying any such acts. “Sources say Beckham and the other player got into it after a threat to end his day was made,” Fox Sports’ Jay Glazer tweeted. “Panthers say no threat was made. Panthers however use the bat to symbolize “bringing the wood” a motivational saying among a lot of teams.”
No fines or suspensions have been handed down by the NFL yet, but that if the league will take any action it should be announced within the next 24 hours.
UPDATE: A one-game suspension has been handed down for Odell Beckham Jr.
The NFL has officially suspended Giants WR Odell Beckham, Jr. for 1 game.
— Field Yates (@FieldYates) December 21, 2015
Photo Credit: USA Today.