Goodell released the NFL’s social media on Friday in response to the “Stronger Together” video, which features several of the league’s most famous players asking the league to take a strong stand after George Floyd’s death in Minneapolis.
“We National Football League, condemn racism and systematic oppression of blacks,” Goodell said. “We, the National Football League, admit we were wrong not to listen to NFL players before and encourage everyone to speak openly and protest peacefully,” Goodell said.
“Without black players, there would be no National Football League,” Goodell said. “And protests across the country are a symbol of the centuries-old inequality of silence and oppression of black players, coaches, fans and staff.”
Goodell said he would address players and others who spoke on these issues to see “how we can improve and move forward for a better and more united NFL family.”
In the video, the players, united, say, “So, on behalf of the National Football League, we would like to hear that from you, the state. We, the National Football League, condemn racism and systemic oppression of black people. We, the National Football League, wrongly admit that we are silenced our players to protest peacefully. We, the National Football League, believe that black lives are important. “
Racism is a persistent issue in the NFL, especially after former San Francisco 49ers striker Colin Kaepernick began kneeling before games as the national anthem played in protest of police brutality.
Goodell’s response comes after an almost multi-year partnership with Jay-Z’s Roc Nation company. The partnership established the Accountability Program, an initiative to award scholarships to families suffering from injustice across the United States. The program has created several public announcements that have been released, and one of them is Meek Mill and Dreamchasers.
A spokesman for the NFL’s Inspire Change program told CNN that the Legacy Grant Program had recently been launched and that three grants had already been awarded to the families of victims of police brutality: Botham Jean, Antwon Rose II and Danroy “DJ” Henry.
Goodell’s response also comes after Saints striker Drew Brees said he “will never agree with someone who doesn’t respect the flag”. Brees commented when asked about players kneeling to protest police brutality after the NFL season begins this fall.
CNN’s faith in Karimi contributed to this report.
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