New York Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. was once again on the receiving end of an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty in Monday night’s 24-10 loss to the Minnesota Vikings.
Beckham took issue with Vikings cornerback Xavier Rhodes hitting him out-of-bounds on a 4-yard pass in the second quarter. He flipped around and got in Rhodes’ face, which drew a penalty for unsportsmanlike conduct. He shouted at the line judge while trying to convey his anger about the hit from Rhodes.
According to Jon Krawczynski of the Associated Press, Beckham believes he’s being targeted now.
“It’s always, it’s just my fault. That’s all I look at it as, it’s my fault. Whatever you want to call it,” Beckham said. “I just have to understand if I sneeze the wrong way, it’ll be a flag, it’ll be a fine. If I tie my shoe the wrong way, it might be a fine or a flag. It is what it is. You have to understand that.”
On the very next play, Beckham and Rhodes were matched up again. Beckham shoved Rhodes at the top of his route, caught a pass for 10 yards and then lowered his shoulder into Rhodes again after going out-of-bounds himself.
“The refs are looking to call anything, and they’re not looking to call anything the other way,” Beckham said. “You have to know that, you have to know that, you have to be OK with it. Unfortunately you have to be OK with it, but that’s just the position I’m in.”
It’s just another episode in a long line of incidents of Beckham losing his temper and getting into trouble on the field. From Beckham throwing punches at a game in Buffalo, to getting into fight with Josh Norman last season to getting fined for a blindside block on Kenny Vaccaro, Beckham has brought the attention on himself.
Whether he feels it’s justified doesn’t matter. He’s got the attention now. Even his own head coach said he has to control his emotions. Beckham will need to settle down so he doesn’t hurt his team in situations that matter more than Monday night’s game in Minnesota.