The Giants fell to the Panthers 38-35 on Sunday despite a 28-point comeback, to drop them to 6-8 on the year. Although New York is technically still alive in the NFC East, they would have to win out and get a lot of help. They might also have to win next week without star wide receiver Odell Beckham, Jr.
The probable suspension stems from multiple incidents between Beckham and Panthers’ cornerback Josh Norman, in which Beckham picked up three different unsportsmanlike penalty calls. The most egregious was a play in the third quarter, where Beckham blindsided Norman with a helmet-to-helmet hit.
Beckham and Norman were both assessed penalties on the play, but Beckham was somehow not ejected and allowed to continue. He took advantage of that by coming alive in the fourth quarter and scoring on the game-tying touchdown pass, but Cam Newton led the Panthers down the field in the final minute, and a Graham Gano field-goal secured Carolina’s victory.
Beckham is third in the NFL in receiving yards this year and tied with Allen Robinson and Doug Baldwin for first in touchdown receptions. Although he’s clearly one of, if not the most talented wideout in the league, Norman proved that it’s possible to get into his head and throw him off his game. Now, the Giants (who first have to hope that the Eagles beat the Redskins) will have to beat a good Minnesota team without their best offensive player if they want any chance at a postseason birth entering the final week of the season.