CBS injects some reality into Odell Beckham Jr. spectacle

Not all voices would be inclined to inject any reality, the other side of the story, so to speak, to the dream-like sequence Odell Beckham Jr. authored Sunday in the Meadowlands, carrying the Giants to a desperation win.

So credit CBS’ Greg Gumbel and Trent Green for not going totally gaga over his spectacular performance and injecting a tiny bit of reality into the spectacle that is OBJ. Early on it was apparent Gumbel was not going to keep his mouth shout when it came to any player me-me’ing.

When Victor Cruz made an elongated first-down sign, after catching a second-quarter pass, Gumbel chided him. “An unnecessary pointing down field (by Cruz),” Gumbel said. “Let the officials do that.”

Late in the third quarter, Beckham, after catching an Eli Manning pass, turned on the retro-rockets. On his way to a 75-yard score, he pointed at the vanquished defender left in the dust. Neither CBS voice brought up the prospect of a taunting penalty. Fortunately, Gumbel raised the question moments later.

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While he didn’t ask Green if Beckham should have been called for taunting, he wondered what the penalty would have been if called. “He was pointing his finger at the defender on his way to the end zone,” Green said. “It would not have negated the touchdown. It would have been assessed on the kickoff.”

Like we said, better to broach the subject than simply avoid it. It’s a fine line. If either analyst torched Beckham for clearly taunting (and the ref not calling it) they would’ve become the story. That’s not in their job description.

When Beckham was penalized for ripping off his helmet (unsportsmanlike conduct), after scoring what turned out to be the winning touchdown, the voices were again restrained but made their point. Gumbel: “We’ll see if that penalty comes back to bite them.” Green: “That 15-yard penalty is very crucial right now.”

Beyond the verbal end of the equation, it is worth wondering (if they haven’t already) will a Giants game now always include a special Beckham Cam? In the third quarter, CBS aired a replay of Beckham lying under the kicker’s net after he scored a touchdown, followed by a sequence of the Beckham’s other net-flicks, including him punching the net (and being hit back), and Beckham kissing the net.

Questionable call on Rodgers-Cromartie almost ruins Giants’ day

Net-net. That’s still way over-the-top coverage.

GOING GREEN

Seeing is not believing.

Maybe this is another reason NFL TV ratings are down.

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Why continue watching a game where some crucial decisions cannot be explained by either the voices calling it or the pictures directors provide. Like that critical, late fourth quarter “pass interference” call on Giants DB Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, leading to a Ravens touchdown and a 23-20 lead with 2:04 left.

Odell Beckham Jr.'s taunting does not go unnoticed with the CBS crew calling the game.

Odell Beckham Jr.’s taunting does not go unnoticed with the CBS crew calling the game.

(Al Bello/Getty Images)

This isn’t about fan-jive. Neutral observers tuning in don’t like being treated like morons. So before the penalty was called, Green, the CBS analyst, definitively, with no hesitation, said: “I got to believe this is going to be offensive pass interference (on Breshad Perriman).” That’s what he saw. So did others among the unwashed masses who viewed CBS’ live shot of DRC with inside position on the Baltimore wideout.

The referee told the crowd ( and TV viewers): “Number 41 (DRC) pulled the receiver at the waste and pulled, preventing the receiver from getting to the ball.”

CBS popped up four replays, which didn’t convince us. The “penalty” still seemed to be of the phantom variety. Yet the fourth replay, which barely showed DRC touching Perriman’s waist, was enough to convince Green to change his mind.

Why?

AND NOW …

Now, about those sinking TV ratings.

Maybe certain eyeballs have become tired of the pace of telecasts, bogged down by commercial interruptions.

Sunday, including halftime of Ravens-Giants, CBS went to commercial breaks 26 times. The average break was 2 minutes 30 seconds. The most interruptions, seven, came in the first quarter. Second was the third quarter with six. Both the third and fourth quarter had five. And there were three breaks at halftime.

Yes we know, we need to get a life.

FAULK YEAH!

While most pregame show Gasbags elected to limit the Colin Kaepernick chatter to how he would perform against Buffalo, and how his “new” contract is structured, NFL Network’s Marshall Faulk believes the Niners QB’s protest was the reason he was held out until the sixth game of the season.

“We say it (Kaepernick’s benching) doesn’t have anything to do with him and his stance,” Faulk said on NFLN’s GameDay Morning. “But the bad part is the way that it appears it seems to have something to do with it. …Throughout my time watching football, playing football, I’ve never heard of a quarterback needing to get his weight up to play.” Amen.

This phantom penalty left viewers confused but CBS analyst Trent Green easlity changes his mind.

This phantom penalty left viewers confused but CBS analyst Trent Green easlity changes his mind.

(Al Bello/Getty Images)

O’YEAH!

It’s a rare occurrence when a pregame show host holds an analyst accountable for something said in the past.

That’s exactly what Melissa Stark did to Shaun O’Hara on NFLN’s “GameDay First.”

After O’Hara outlined what’s “wrong” with Eli Manning, Stark, not so subtly, turned the clock back. “Shaun, I don’t want to point this out but I will,” she said. “A couple of weeks ago, didn’t you say he (Manning) was playing the best football of his career?”

Someone should ask O’Hara how those bus tires feel.

BARK’S BACK

Shocking Charles Barkley appeared Sunday on CBS’ “The NFL Today.”

Who would’ve thought he would return to a studio where he toils endless hours over a hot microphone, looking to be on the verge of nodding out during the NCAA basketball tournament.

Then again, maybe this was a sentimental journey for Sir Charles. Or maybe he wants to dabble in football analysis. That’s exactly what Barkley needs, another job.

Wonder which Pigskin Gasbag he would replace on the panel? … Is there anyone who is more unlikable on these shows than “ESPN Countdown’s” Trent Dilfer?

Maybe the ratings for that show are tanking because he’s scaring eyeballs away.

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Source: NY Daily News Headlines Sports News

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