Bryan Altman

What most of the sports world saw on Sunday afternoon when the New York Giants squared off against the now 14-0 Carolina Panthers was one of the most promising young players in the NFL completely lose his cool.

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Odell Beckham Jr. and Panthers’ cornerback Josh Norman engaged in heated altercations both physically and verbally from pretty much the start of the game. Those actions culminated in Beckham’s helmet-to-helmet hit on Norman at the end of a play that earned the star wide receiver a one-game suspension.

What most of us didn’t see, or know of, was Beckham’s side to the story, which was revealed yesterday after the suspension was handed down by the league.

Reports have stated that Beckham felt threatened by the Panthers during pregame warmups as one of their practice squad players was reportedly brandishing a baseball bat and hurling “anti-gay slurs” at Beckham. According to some reports, the slurs continued throughout the game from Norman himself.

Now, a video has been released that supports at least some of what the Giants and Beckham are saying.

In the video, Beckham is seen engaging with a Panthers player off camera. Beckham becomes more and more incensed, before finally taking off his helmet. At this time, Panthers’ practice squad player Marcus Ball comes into the picture and approaches Beckham with a black bat in his hand.

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There is no discernible audio in the video to hear what was said, but the Panthers player doesn’t make any visible threatening gestures towards the receiver.

The Panthers have said that the bat has been a part of their pregame routine for much of the season and that the team carries it around in honor of their injured teammate, Bene Benwikere.

While the video hardly defends Beckham’s actions, it does offer a new insight as to why the receiver was thrown so far off his game and went so far out of his way to engage with Norman.

Beckham has stated that he will appeal his one-game suspension in the hope of playing in the Giants must-win game on Sunday night against the Minnesota Vikings.

[h/t Deadspin]

Bryan Altman is, for some reason, an unabashed fan of the Rangers, Jets and Mets. If he absolutely had to pick a basketball team it would be the Knicks, but he’d gladly trade them for just one championship for any of his other three teams.

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