Odell Beckham Jr. was suspended for one game by the NFL, but not everyone is satisfied with that decision. It’s sparked a great debate, with some saying the punishment was too harsh while others are saying it’s not harsh enough.
The announcement that Beckham was suspended came on Monday after much review from the NFL board. The punishment came as a result of Beckham’s unsportsmanlike conduct towards cornerback Josh Norman of the Carolina Panthers. On Sunday, during the game between the New York Giants and the Carolina Panthers, Beckham reportedly attacked Norman several times. The whistle was blown three times for unnecessary roughness during the game, with the most glaring incident occurring in the third quarter. At this point, Beckham ran full speed at Norman and slammed his helmet into the side of Norman’s helmet.
These actions went to the board for immediate review, resulting in Beckham being suspended for one game. The suspension was considered a blatant, violent hit against a defenseless player, “in which Beckham left his feet prior to contact to spring forward and upward into his opponent.”
Beckham is appealing the suspension, and the decision is expected to come out Wednesday. If the appeal is successful, Beckham will be allowed to play the next game and have his $52,529 fine revoked.
Some are stalwartly supporting Beckham’s appeal, believing that the hit wasn’t nearly as bad as the board said it was. His actions have been compared to that of Cody Wallace, who performed a similar play but received no repercussions.
Maurice-Jones Drew of NFL.com’s The Great Debate believes the penalty was too harsh. He says that Beckham was under a lot of pressure in that instance, but that his actions were justified.
“Yes, he did lose his composure in a way, but they were going at him from every run play from the beginning of the gamey. Every run play… It was a dirty play, but there’s been a lot of dirty plays. Andre Johnson…Adam Packman Jones…Adam Packman Jones slammed a guy’s head on a helmet….The reason I’m saying he shouldn’t be suspended…there has to be consistency. We don’t have consistency in this part. Either you suspend everyone with a personal foul in this way, or you don’t.”
However, others are saying Beckham should have been suspended and more. Akbar Gbajabiamila, Drew’s opponent on The Great Debate, believes that the suspension was completely warranted.
“Odell Beckham Jr. should absolutely be suspended, and here’s why: He lost his absolute composure, especially on that play that we saw where he just missiled straight through him. You saw Josh Norman’s neck left in a vulnerable position. It could have been done. He could have been paralyzed or dead with that kind of shot. With as fast as Odell Beckham runs – and we know how fast Beckham can run – he was running at 14 miles an hour at the guy’s neck. His body was a straight on live missile. You just can’t do that.”
Beckham’s history has also been mentioned. This is the fourth time Beckham has been suspended or fined as a result of his violent acts when he lost his temper during a game.
ESPN.com also pointed out that Beckham’s punishment may have been a little light, and that he should have been ejected from the game in addition to his suspension.
“In a video shown to all players this summer, the NFL emphasized that ‘flagrant conduct will result in ejection.’ The NFL rulebook defines ‘flagrant’ as “extremely objectionable, conspicuous, unnecessary, avoidable or gratuitous.’ Given that definition, it’s difficult to understand why McAulay didn’t consider the third-quarter play flagrant and thus an ejection-worthy offense. Suspending Beckham would be an acknowledgement that he should have.”
What do you think? Was Odell Beckham Jr’s suspension the right punishment?
[Photo by Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images]