New York Giants star wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr.’s one-game suspension was upheld earlier today, and the former first-round pick issued the following statement as a result:
I owe some people an apology. I wasn’t raised to act like I did the other day. I am not here to make excuses for my conduct. This isn’t about anything that was said or done to me. This is about my behavior, and I am responsible for my behavior. People expect better from me, and I expect better from myself.
First of all, I apologize to the organization I represent, the Giants, and our ownership, John Mara and his family and Steve Tisch and his family. And Jerry Reese, who drafted me and gave me the opportunity to be a part of this organization.
I want to apologize to Giants fans. They want to be proud of us, and proud of players like me who represent their team. What happened the other day was embarrassing to them and embarrassing to me.
A lot of kids look up to me as a role model. That is a responsibility I accept and take seriously. Many of the parents of those kids have asked since Sunday what they should say to their children about my conduct. I don’t have the perfect answer, but I think one thing they can say is how I handled myself the other day is an example of how not to conduct yourself. I displayed poor sportsmanship. And those parents can also say that when you act like that, there are consequences. And I hope to be an example of somebody who did something wrong and learned from it.
I owe Coach Coughlin, our coaches and my teammates an apology. They have had to answer for my actions, and that’s not fair to them. How I conduct myself is my responsibility. I let my coaches and teammates down.
I am blessed and privileged to play the game I love, and I will do all I can to carry myself in a way that honors the game, the NFL, my team, my coaches, all my fans and my family moving forward.
Beckham was suspended by the NFL for drawing three personal fouls against Carolina Panthers cornerback Josh Norman last weekend, including a helmet-to-helmet spear that should have resulted in his ejection. He will miss this weekend’s game against the Minnesota Vikings, a borderline must-win for the Giants if they wish to keep their postseason hopes alive.
New York has receivers who can step up in Beckham’s absence, but none are as athletic nor as skilled as the former LSU Tiger. No matter how you look at it, this is a devastating loss for the Giants.
Beckham will be eligible to return for the regular season finale against the Philadelphia Eagles on January 3rd.