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The Rumble, Resolved

Well, the controversy about the Odell Beckham/ Josh Norman tangle on Sunday has been resolved... for now.

ODB received a one-game suspension from the NFL. He appealed the suspension, as was his right under collective bargaining. The appeal was heard today, and denied, so the suspension will stand, and Beckham will not play next weekend when the Giants meet the Vikings. He will also lose a game check, which will cost him something like $60,000.

Subsequent to the ruling, Beckham issued a very classy apology:


Meanwhile, the NFL has also taken steps to fine CB Josh Norman of the Panthers some $26,000 for his own actions in the game. I would have preferred to see Norman suspended as well, since he was the instigator... but ODB did go further, and $26 grand is not nothing, so a rough sort of justice was done. Unlike Beckham, there have been no apologies forthcoming from Norman, just more trash talk. Now he is getting into it with Roddy White, a receiver for the Atlanta Falcons. One has to wonder whether Norman has learned anything. Sunday will show us.

The NFL has also forbidden teams to carry baseball bats and other 'foreign objects' onto the field during the pregame and post-game, which is probably a good idea. It would be nice if they also passed some rules to treat homophobic slurs the same way they do racist slurs, but so far that hasn't happened.

I expect Odell will learn from this, and come back next year bigger and better than ever.

This year? Not much hope there. The Giants are done.



( 16 comments — Leave a comment )
Dec. 24th, 2015 12:26 am (UTC)
And now we can all move on
If only this was the most egregious thing that happened to the Giants this season. The 2015 Giants should go down in franchise history as the best worst team ever. Or... worst best team?
Cody Thomas Lachney
Dec. 24th, 2015 12:33 am (UTC)
As a huge Panthers fan myself, I wasn't a fan of what Josh Norman did. I'd chalk it up to two young, highly skilled, athletes not willing to give into each other and trying to prove there were the Alpha dog.

I'm sure there will both move past it and continue to play on high levels.
Dec. 24th, 2015 01:02 am (UTC)
That about does it for Coughlin. He gave us a great run and will always have a place in my heart after the two miraculous Super Bowl wins, but it seems time to move on.

I think Bill Cowher might end up being our next coach just because of the relationship between the Rooney's and the Mara's. Would not be a fan of that. Obviously would love us to get Harbaugh but I doubt he's leaving Michigan after one year (though I wonder what he'd do if the Colts offered him GM powers). I would take Urban Meyer from Ohio State if we could poach him. I'd take Jon Gruden. Can't really think of anyone else that I would want badly (barring Chip Kelly leaving the Eagles :) :) :) :) )
Dec. 24th, 2015 01:36 am (UTC)
Chip Kelly? Gak gak, heaven forbid.

I don't know that Tom is going anywhere.

If he does... yeah, Harbaugh would be nice, but it won't happen.
Patrick St.Croix
Dec. 24th, 2015 04:48 am (UTC)
I agree with George, I don't think Tom Coughlin is going anywhere. Plus, if I was a Giants fan I wouldn't want to change it up. In Baseball, managerial changes to a consistent team sometimes can light a fire in players, to compete harder. However, football is different, and consistency within a program Is key to their success. I will admit I'm a Patriots fan, but I have come to respect Coughlin. Even though 2007&2012 hurt to think about. Just look at his record against the most consistent team, or franchise, of the last two decade. Even those two Giants super bowl teams, weren't run always during the regular season. Though once into the playoffs they thrived because of Coughlins abilities to game plan, not get intimidated, and to make tough calls. These attributes are not things you have seen consistently enough throughout the rest NFL over the past 16 weeks. This just shows how some coaches, including Coughlin, don't come around often, and are just in a class of their own.
Dec. 24th, 2015 05:07 am (UTC)
After this little episode it would be pretty rich if the Giants went after Sean McDermott, the DC of the Panthers. He's obviously had tremendous success, and despite this hiccup the Panthers and Giants have had a good relationship. David Gettleman spent decades with the Giants, and one of his first acts as GM of the Panthers was to send over Jon Beason basically for free.
Dec. 24th, 2015 05:25 am (UTC)
McDermott might or might not be good. You can never tell with coordinators. Their success -- or failure -- hings as much on the players as the schemes, and the players don't come along. If someone hires McDermott as HC, they won't be getting Cam Newton too... and it remains to be seen if he can have the same success if his qb is Geno Smith or Nick Foles or Blake Bortles or whoever.
Dec. 24th, 2015 12:21 pm (UTC)
Kelly definitely deserves some criticism for his offseason moves but I think also at times he gets overly criticized by the media maybe due to perceived arrogance from his "do it different" approach.

The year before he arrived at Philadelphia, they were 4-12 and in his first two years he won 10 games. If he finishes this season with 2 wins which is very possible, the Eagles would be 8-8 making him 28-20 over his first three seasons. That's really not too bad when you consider he's had 3 backups and 1 low end starter as his quarterbacks. Yet with some of the criticism he gets, you would think his results have been much worse.

Kelly has had a rough year but in the end I think he'll learn and eventually will have the Eagles making the playoffs every year like Belicheat.
Dec. 24th, 2015 01:05 am (UTC)
You can't really suspend someone for 'starting it' or 'instigating.' I think the reason it was such an easy decision to suspend OBJ is that this is not a first offense. He's thrown punches in several games this year. Got into it pretty bad during the Bills game. Norman is a trash talker, but he typically isn't a violent one.

Edited at 2015-12-24 01:06 am (UTC)
Dec. 24th, 2015 01:14 am (UTC)
Agree somewhat
It is nice that for the most part this is now resolved.

I disagree that Norman should've been suspended, there was nothing that Norman did to justify a suspension, which is a very strict punishment in the NFL.

OBJ's statement was definitely on point. I figured he wouldn't issue until after the hearing. While some say his actions Sunday say a lot about him, so does that statement in a very good way. He 100% owned up to his actions and blamed no one but himself. You can't ask anymore of a man than that.

I hope Norman issues some sort of apology as well. Though it should be noted, OBJ didn't apologize to the Panthers or Norman, not real surprising. But I wouldn't expect Norman to apologize to them either.

Yea $26000 isn't small. I myself am guilty of thinking they can afford it, but in reality that's a lot. Especially for people that aren't the top paid in the NFL. I'm actually surprised he wasn't fined more. He did grab the ref after the second altercation between himself and OBJ. Which is a stiff fine. So they must have had good reasons not to.

As far as Roddy White or the Falcons, he was responding to THEIR trash talk. They gave him no respect saying he wasn't that good. So not sure why Norman in more words saying Roddy White isn't good is wrong. This is normal trash talk around the NFL on a weekly basis. Norman is just under more scrutiny now because of last week. But nothing said by either side is uncalled for.

As far as homophobic slurs, even their punter Brad Wing has said he heard no homophobic slurs. And he was right next to OBJ. So it shouldn't be assumed that it actually happened. I understand some big name ex players have said the Panthers said it, but what proof do they have? Were they there? I'll stick to Brad Wing's statement that there were no homophobic slurs. And maybe it did happen at a different point in the game when Brad wasn't around.

Other athletes have voiced their opinion that players moms and kids are off limits and everything else is game. Not saying it's ok to make homophobic slurs, and a lot of things people say are probably just as bad. I do get that it's a new era, and there are things that society in general just doesn't accept anymore that used to be acceptable. Maybe there will be some sort of statement from the NFL on the matter whether it's ever proven or not.

Now Brad Wing did say he heard Marcus Ball threaten OBJ about ending his day etc... It's hard to not believe him. Admittedly inside I really really hope it's not true. But I hope the Panthers and the NFL ado get to the bottom of it and act accordingly. I absolutely don't believe there is a place on any team for someone making threats like that to another player. And I would expect he would not have a place on the Panthers team either.
Dec. 24th, 2015 03:35 am (UTC)
Coughlin's Job in Jeopardy
Coughlin is at risk of being fired because this is (probably) the fourth consecutive season NYG will miss the playoffs. In my opinion, that alone is not enough reason to fire a coach with rings. But, last week, Coughlin should have pulled OBJ aside early on so the receiver could cool down. After the third flag, many coaches would have pulled a receiver for a drive or longer. I can't help but wonder if Coughlin would have pulled OBJ had Giants been ahead or already made the playoffs. Whatever the answer, Coughlin won't be replaced by Chip Kelly.
Duane Freese
Dec. 24th, 2015 04:28 am (UTC)
The rumble ain't over til it's over
The Fat Lady hasn't song yet. The NFC East is a squirrelier division than Matthew Stafford doing Ray Lewis' dance. The Eagles could easily throw the hiccupping Washington Potatoes this weekend, and then Washington could go to Dallas and do what they did just before they began their meh 2 game win streak. If the Giants somehow give Peterson and crew a little belt on the chops Sunday night, they'll have the Eagles at home to do a tap dance. And that would make them, at 8-8 the division winner.
Now consider, in 2007, they lost to the undefeated Pats 35-38 on the last game of the season and went on as a 10-6 regular season team to beat them in the Super Bowl. In 2011, four years later, they lost 35-38 in game 12 to the then undefeated Packers, finished 9-7, and then went on to beat them in the divisional round before beating the Pats again in the Super Bowl. And now four years later, and it's 2015, and the Giants lose to the undefeated Panthers,by 35-38. Three undefeated P teams by the same score four years a part. And they can go 8-8 and win the division and, if so, face the Panthers in the divisional round. And the Patriots are poised to go back to the Super Bowl.
Do you not see the fates align? To go and win Super Bowls as a 10-6, 9-7, 8-8, defeat the unbeaten team you lost to, and then face the original unbeaten team whose flirtation with history you destroyed? Wouldn't that be a story worth remembering?
Of course, the alternative is that the Panthers get to the Super Bowl undefeated and they lose to the Patriots, who get redemption at last. But that's not as interesting.
Dec. 24th, 2015 10:39 am (UTC)
I know this has nothing to do with what you're talking about, but please don't let them censor your work on tv. It needs to be shown in all it's glory.
Dec. 24th, 2015 03:50 pm (UTC)
first time poster
I wanted to post this in the other thread but its locked.

First off, Love your books. I'm more a lurker than a poster but we all have opinions on sports so here's mine 😁

This game has highlighted the hypocrisy of sports media and the over reaction of sports fans in general. When the refs throw the flags and stops the players from being physical, pundits and fans scream "let them play" then when the refs "let them play" it shouldn't be a surprise that the players do whatever it takes to get an edge. Norman walked the edge of the line but he mostly played with in the rules. Sure he got away with some stuff but so do lineman on every single play. Odj lost control and blatantly committed what has become the most egregious sin in the NFL (intentional helmet to helmet) up until then the line was not crossed.

NFL players notoriously talk trash on the field. Most can keep control, some will shove, a few throw punches, obj threw his head. Closed fist punches and helmet shots are illegal, trash talk and shoving is not. Of course Norman egged him on and most likely instigated it but Norman didn't cross the line in my opinion, just went as close as possible to it.

The bat thing is silly. Lots of teams "bring the wood" now because odj used it as a reason for his actions the NFL will ban that type of team motivation. Maybe the panthers did insinuated they would use a bat on him, so what. Did he really think they would actually do it in a crowed stadium with cameras everywhere. I like odj and his actions in that game didn't change my opinion of him. He got frustrate and he handled it poorly, he is human. Still a great player.

As to the homophobic slurs. They probably happened, its probably happened on every field in every game for generations. Anyone that has played any level of footballs will tell you this. Is it right? Is it PC? absolutely not. But it happens and its not fair to Norman to say we have always turned a blind eye to it but in your case, its not cool. Going forward, if the NFL wants to crack down on homophobic comments, I'm all for it. But I don't think its right to punish one guy for doing something that many in the league no do.

Just my opinion.
Andrew Firestone
Dec. 24th, 2015 03:51 pm (UTC)
Oh my God! Mr. Martin they gave you a shout-out on First Take! Do you think you'll accept their invitation? I for one would love to see you talk some sports with Skip and Stephen A., thought I know your schedule most likely makes this difficult.
Dec. 24th, 2015 07:37 pm (UTC)
Not that it matters at this point, but the Washington Post reports that the league has concluded its investigation having found no evidence of any homophobic slurs being used. They were filming for NFL films, and I could be wrong but I've heard that Norman himself was mic'd up for the game. So if they can't find any slurs being used it's a good sign.

That's very relieving to me as a Panthers fan.
( 16 comments — Leave a comment )


George R.R. Martin
George R. R. Martin

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