Was there any point in the second half when coach Tom Coughlin considered taking Odell Beckham Jr. out of the game? Even for a series?
“It was a strong consideration,” Coughlin said when pressed on the subject. In the third quarter Beckham was flagged for two personal fouls — adding to the one he received in the first half — and he launched himself at Panthers cornerback Josh Norman while blocking on a running play. The second-year receiver seemed out of control, more focused on fighting Norman than beating him.
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So why didn’t Coughlin do it?
“Because I wanted him to play the game,” Coughlin said. “He had to learn. He’s got to learn at some point how to deal with some things on the field . . . I want him out there to win the football game.”
What did Coughlin do to try to calm down his volatile superstar?
“I walked with him,” he said, but it wasn’t for a long conversation. “At that point in time, my mind was involved in something else.” Coughlin added that he will have a lengthier chat with Beckham at some point. “Whatever we have to discuss, we will discuss in private.”
What will be the repercussions for Beckham?
It’s likely he’ll be given a sizable fine from the NFL. Besides the three penalties there were several other unflagged plays in which he and Norman were tangled up, throwing punches, and even body-slamming each other to the turf. Given Beckham’s helmet-to-helmet hit on Newton that came on the “block,” there is also a chance that the league could suspend Beckham for next week’s game against the Vikings. Such decisions typically come early in the week.
What do the Giants do now?
Until now they’ve always been able to come away from losses — even the tough ones — and have the division lead within sight. That might no longer be the case. “We’re definitely running out of chances,” defensive tackle Cullen Jenkins said. “Our chances are [slim] and a lot of things have to happen now.” Added linebacker Jonathan Casillas: “We have hope. We just have to get help from other teams.”
Will Cam Newton be the MVP?
He should be, and he certainly played like it on Sunday. He became the first player in NFL history to throw for at least 300 yards, run for at least 100 yards and be part of five touchdowns in a single game. His 47-yard run to set up the first touchdown of the game was the longest by an opposing quarterback against the Giants since the 1970 merger. He also became the first player in NFL history to pass for 3,000 yards and rush for 500 in five straight seasons.
Was Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie benched in the second half?
Seemed like it after he dropped what should have been a pick-six and later getting beat on a touchdown pass to Devin Funchess. “He started to alternate there in the third quarter,” Coughlin said of rotating DRC, which he has not done this season. “Some technique work that’s got to be done there.”