The Baltimore Ravens — or at least the person running their account and a writer for their website — think they have video evidence that cornerback Marlon Humphrey was not choking Cleveland Browns receiver Odell Beckham Jr. during the teams’ game Sunday afternoon.
Real-time footage of the fight between the two players shows Beckham punching Humphrey, who then appears to wrap his hands around Beckham’s throat while pinning the receiver to the ground. Humphrey and Beckham received offsetting penalties after the play.
Browns coach Freddie Kitchens said Monday he thought Humphrey should have been ejected from the game. “I don’t like seeing our player on the field and someone’s hands around his throat,” he said. “I don’t like that.”
But the Ravens website published a story the next morning with the headline “Marlon Humphrey Didn’t Choke Odell Beckham Jr.” The team tweeted a link to the story and a slow-motion video of the incident and stated, “Close-up video shows exactly what happened, and that Humphrey didn’t choke him.”
There’s been a lot of talk about the play between Marlon Humphrey and Odell Beckham Jr.— Baltimore Ravens (@Ravens) October 1, 2019
Close-up video shows exactly what happened, and that Humphrey didn’t choke him.
📰: https://t.co/mdpmljNMxl pic.twitter.com/AO9KAfCW6a
According to the article, “Humphrey definitely did not choke Beckham” (the italics are theirs). It goes on to state, “Humphrey pinned the receiver to the turf, but, contrary to what Kitchens said, did not wrap his hands around Beckham’s neck and did not choke him.”
As seen in the video posted with the article, Humphrey’s right hand was in a fist and appeared to be applying pressure to Beckham’s chin and not wrapped around his neck. But when Humphrey moves that hand, a pretty clear view is offered of his left hand, which very well could be grasping the receiver’s throat.
At the very least, the video does not provide the clear-cut evidence the Ravens promised in their tweet, headline and article.