Washington Wizards star John Wall spoke about the protests in the NFL sparked by recent comments from Donald Trump about Colin Kaepernick.
Wall discussed how Chris Paul, who is the President of the National Basketball Players’ Association, was joined by Carmelo Anthony as well as LeBron James and Dwyane Wade at the ESPYs when they opened up about social justice.
“Most of our franchise guys, the big time players in our league, are African-Americans … Franchise guys are quarterbacks. You have guys like Tom Brady and Aaron Rodgers, love those guys, very talented. Until those guys come out and speak, I don’t think the NFL is going to make any adjustments.”
He mentioned that Donald Sterling was removed as owner of the Clippers when the league received pressure from big players like James.
Wall believes football needs players like Brady and Rodgers to make a statement for a tangible change. You can watch his full comments below.
Of course, many in the NFL either kneeled during the national anthem or locked arms before games over the weekend. But the movement has still lacked representation from another quarterback besides Kaepernick, who is no longer in the league.
Rodgers and Washington quarterback Kirk Cousins both locked arms with their teammates on the sideline during the national anthem but did not kneel.
Michael Bennett of the Seahawks spoke of a similar need for a white player to take action (via ESPN):
“It would take a white player to really get things changed, because when somebody from the other side understands and they step up and they speak up about it … it would change the whole conversation. Because when you bring somebody who doesn’t have to be a part of [the] conversation making himself vulnerable in front of it, I think when that happens, things will really take a jump.”
Brady and Rodgers both shared photos on their Instagram accounts about unity, though Wall says action during the game would go a long way to further help the movement of support.
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