The NFL league office has denied Odell Beckham’s appeal for his one-game suspension for this Sunday’s game against the Minnesota Vikings. Beckham received the suspension for repeatedly scuffling with Carolina Panthers cornerback Josh Norman after playing during Carolina’s victory last Sunday — with the most crucial moment being a dangerous blindside helmet-to-helmet hit on Norman on the backside of a play.
For as much as the incident has dominated talk show segments, the suspension does have a tangible effect on the playoff picture. At 6-8, the Giants are currently tied with the Philadelphia Eagles for second in the lackluster NFC East, one game behind Washington at 7-7. After playing the Vikings this week, the Giants host Philadelphia in Week 17. Football Outsiders projects that the Giants have a 4.2% chance of making the playoffs.
Beckham’s suspension also increases the Vikings’ odds of surpassing the Green Bay Packers for the division lead in the NFC North. Although Green Bay is one game better than Minnesota at the moment (10-4 compared to 9-5), the Packers play at the Arizona Cardinals on Sunday before hosting the Vikings on Week 17. Both teams have clinched playoff spots, and Green Bay has a 56.9% chance of securing the division title.
The suspension also means that Rueben Randle will by the Giants’ #1 wide receiver on Sunday against the Vikings. Randle has 51 catches, including six touchdowns, for 638 yards this season. The only other Giants wide receiver with more than 100 receiving yards on the season is Dwayne Harris (35 catches, 390 yards, four touchdowns).