Here’s How Athletes Reacted To Drew Brees’ Statement On The Flag

Darren - June 4, 2020

Here’s How Athletes Reacted To Drew Brees’ Statement On The Flag

Darren - June 4, 2020
Photo Credit: Who Dat Dish

18. Demario Davis

There’s no doubt Brees is receiving a lot of vitriol right now. However, not everybody believes it is constructive. Saints linebacker Davis believes his teammate’s words are only a distraction. While he doesn’t support them, he also doesn’t think that focusing on an individual’s words will bring great change.

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He tweeted: “Let us stay focused on the issues that unite us. We are standing united to bring an end to systematic racism and address police brutality, especially against blacks people. If the conversation isn’t about that, it’s a distraction and isn’t helpful at this current time.”

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17. K’Lavon Chaisson

Brees is 41 and is entering his 21st season in the NFL. Incredibly, some of this year’s drafted players were born after Brees started playing. That’s an incredible statistic because it means that many of them grew up watching him. Brees was an inspiration for a lot of these young men.

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But there’s no doubting that his words stung some of them. Jacksonville Jaguars rookie Chaisson was one player who revealed his pain. In a short tweet, he wrote: “Drew hurt me with that one.” Will this impact Brees’ season? This is a divided league.

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16. Josh Hart

Hart knows all about adversity. After all, his high school almost kicked him out over poor grades. But he was able to bounce back and develop into a stronger human being. As a result of his second chance, he is trying to make a difference. Like many of his fellow NBA stars, the Pelicans shooting guard wants change.

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As a fellow athlete based in New Orleans, he took Brees’ words personally. He tweeted: “Never was about disrespecting the armed forces. It’s about police brutality and racial injustices in our country. This country can’t be unified if African Americans are unjustly killed in the street because of the color of their skin.”

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15. Mark Ingram II

Baltimore Ravens running back Ingram added his voice to the many tearing Brees apart right now. However, he also put Aaron Rodgers in stark contrast to the New Orleans star after the former put up a message in support of black lives. He quoted the Packers star and then added his own commentary.

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Ingram tweeted: “It has NEVER been about an anthem or a flag. Not then. Not now.” THANK YOU for speaking truth for the oppressed and unheard. THANK YOU for understanding the WHY. @AaronRodgers12″ Brees definitely looks a bit insensitive compared to his rival right now. 

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14. Troy Brown Jr.

One of the most complex parts of this situation is that Brees did take a knee before. You could argue that he did this because he wanted to support his teammates beyond his own beliefs. However, Washington Wizards star Brown thinks he’s a hypocrite.

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Brown took aim at the quarterback’s actions. He targeted the decision to take a knee by tweeting: “Wait a second… Didn’t Drew Brees take a knee with his African American teammates during the time that Colin Kaepernick was fighting for racial injustice…? So all of that was fake… smh”

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13. Terrell Owens

Six-time Pro Bowler Owens is a 49ers legend. The former wide receiver is also a Hall of Famer. He was one of the most talented players of his generation. The 46-year-old Owens reacted to Brees and his statement by reposting Ed Reed’s video.

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He also reposted an image of a black American marine taking a knee. Owens did this because he wanted to show that active military personnel was happy to make the gesture in order to pursue equality and civil rights in the nation they’re defending.

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12. Ed Reed

Baltimore Ravens Hall of Famer Reed had one of the most emotional responses to Brees’ interview. He shredded the quarterback in a devastating video that eviscerated everything Brees said. Furthermore, several of his fellows in the NFL world shared it.

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He said:

“Drew Brees, you’re a straight sucker, man. You’re a sucker for that, bro. Why you think all these young people are out here protesting? Why you think they’re out here protesting? The looting, I can see you speaking on the looting and saying that’s bad, you don’t support that. But why you think all these young people are out here protesting?”

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11. Marcus Davenport

Not everybody is railing Brees. In fact, one of his teammates has spoken out passionately in support of the veteran. Davenport took to Twitter to defend his teammate because he believes his actions speak stronger than his words. Furthermore, we don’t always have to agree.

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Davenport tweeted: “Drew wasn’t talking about the current protest, the riots or really anything besides HIS feelings on kneeling during the National Anthem. He even explained what they were, the basis, and that he actually stands with us. Do we have to entirely agree with him, no.”

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10. Jamal Adams

New York Jets safety Adams summed up in two words what a lot of people thought about Brees and his situation. He tweeted, “Dammit Drew.” The Texan two-time All-Pro selection has been very active throughout the current period of unrest. He wants to use his platform as a driving force for change.

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The former Cowboys star tweeted in support of George Floyd. He wrote: “We can’t let these conversations die and cant’ forget those we’ve lost. Stop killing us. This isn’t just a political issue, this is about the morality of our nation. We all have a part to play!”

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9. Damon Harrison Sr.

Former Detroit Lions nose tackle Harrison wrote a series of tweets in response to Brees. First of all, he called him dumb for his choice of words. Then he targeted the Saints star for his military claims. After all, plenty of black Americans are members of the military too.

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But his first tweet was the most cutting. Dumbfounded, he tweeted: “How can you be in the locker rooms, speaking to the players, know the reasoning, and yet still be dumb enough to believe it’s about the flag. Like HOW???? He should know better than that. He just doesn’t care. Damn man not Drew…”

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8. Tyrann Mathieu

‘Honey Badger’ is a safety for the Kansas City Chiefs. The Super Bowl winner was phenomenal in 2019 but he’s just as strong off the field. He’s not afraid to let people know what he thinks and took to Twitter to remonstrate with Brees after the latter’s comments.

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Brees’ words cut to his heart because he is a New Orleans native. Because of this, he wants the quarterback to represent the ‘Big Easy’ in a responsible way. He tweeted. “@drewbrees SMH. You represent New Orleans Louisiana. Don’t ever forget that! #Bottomofthemap”

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7. Aaron Rodgers

As a fellow veteran quarterback and legend of the game, Rodgers stood in stark contrast to Brees. Without naming his counterpart, he took aim at what Brees said. In sum, he explained that players should do what they have to do as they seek equality in a peaceful manner.

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Rodgers tweeted: “A few years ago we were criticized for locking arms in solidarity before the game. It has NEVER been about an anthem or a flag. Not then. Not now. Listen with an open heart, let’s educate ourselves, and then turn word and thought into action.”

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6. Daniel Cormier

UFC fighter Cormier is also a Louisiana native. As such, the Saints and the state are close to his heart. However, the timing and nature of Brees’ comments at such a sensitive moment left him stunned. To sum up, Cormier doesn’t understand what Brees was trying to achieve at such a polarizing time.

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Cormier is very active on social media because of his fight career and works with ESPN. A supporter of the Saints and Brees, Cormier was very disappointed by the quarterback’s words. DC tweeted: “For a man that doesn’t make many mistakes, this is a big one. So disappointing.”

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5. Joe Horn

As we’ve already said, not everyone is criticizing Brees. Former Saints wide receiver Horn defended his old teammate because he believes in Brees’ personal character. In short, he thinks that Brees’s actions off the field truly reflect his character. To those calling Brees a racist, he had a strongly-worded message.

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Horn said: “People should not be throwing Drew Brees under the bus, and they definitely need to pump the brakes on labeling him a racist.  I know Drew Brees. Drew Brees has done a lot to help black families and the black community in New Orleans.”

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4. Richard Sherman

San Francisco 49ers corner Sherman became incredibly impassioned by Brees’ statements. The Super Bowl winner reflected on how people treat him in public as well as commenting on how people like Brees are a lost cause. Whether or not you agree, you have to respect his self-belief.

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Sherman tweeted: “He’s beyond lost. Guarantee you there were black men fighting alongside your grandfather but this doesn’t seem to be about that. That uncomfortable conversation you are trying to avoid by injecting military into a conversation about brutality and equality is part of the problem.”

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3. LeBron James

Ever the social activist, NBA star James is one of the most high-profile black athletes to target Brees for his comments. He explained that his father-in-law supports taking a knee despite being a veteran. In short, he believes that the Saints legend is missing the point and sending a dangerous message.

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James tweeted: “WOW MAN!! Is it still surprising at this point. Sure isn’t! You literally still don’t understand why Kap was kneeling on one knee?? Has absolutely nothing to do with the disrespect of [flag emoji] and our soldiers(men and women) who keep our land free. My father-in-law was one of those.”

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3. Charvarius Ward

Outraged by Brees’ words, Super Bowl winner Ward made his feelings known. The Kansas City Chiefs’ corner only had three years in high school during a very tough childhood. As a result, he knows all about what it means to suffer and endure hardship. Because of this, he felt like he had to speak out.

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His online message was defiant. Ward tweeted: “We just want that “Life, Liberty and Pursuit of Happiness” we were promised!! So if we continue to get killed for being black… we gone keep kneeling & keep fighting!!” Don’t expect a warm welcome for Brees in Kansas City.

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2. Michael Thomas

As a wide receiver for the Saints, Thomas has one of the closest on-field relationships with Brees. However, off the field, things have turned very cold because the LA native is disgusted by his teammate’s reaction. To sum up, he appears dismissive of Brees’ knowledge.

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In a tweet, he wrote: “We don’t care if you don’t agree and whoever else how about that. He don’t know no better.” It’s clear that Thomas believes that ignorance should automatically cause your opinion to be discounted. Thomas later accepted Brees’ apology that came a day later after his infamous interview. We still don’t know if their locker room is going to be a very pleasant place.

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1. Malcolm Jenkins

New Orleans Saints safety Jenkins had one of the most emotional responses to Brees’ words. He said that his teammate doesn’t understand his privilege. Also, he believes that Brees should not expect everybody to support his perspective because black Americans have suffered for centuries, including those who have served.

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“Our communities are under siege and we need help,” Jenkins said. “And what you’re telling us is don’t ask for help that way, ask for it a different way. I can’t listen to it when you ask that way. We’re done asking, Drew. And people who share your sentiments, who express those, and push them throughout the world, the airwaves, are the problem.”

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Drew Brees Apologises

Finally, let’s take a look at Brees’ apology. After receiving a lot of flak on social media, he decided to take to Twitter and Instagram and express his regrets. His teammate Demario Davis praised him for showing leadership, however, others say he hasn’t actually dealt with his comments on taking a knee. Check out the full post and his original statement.

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He ended the post with the words: “I am sick about the way my comments were perceived yesterday, but I take full responsibility and accountability. I recognize that I should do less talking and more listening…and when the black community is talking about their pain, we all need to listen. For that, I am very sorry and I ask your forgiveness.”