March 2, 2021

Wright: NFL boycotts ‘a possibility’

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Wright: “The mould has been broken. (Boycotting matches) is definitely a possibility”

Last Updated: 28/08/20 8:22pm

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Washington team president Jason Wright says black athletes are tired of social injustice in the US and his team is committed to bringing change within society

Washington team president Jason Wright says black athletes are tired of social injustice in the US and his team is committed to bringing change within society

Washington team president Jason Wright believes NFL players could follow the lead of other US sports and boycott matches in support of social justice.

NBA, MLB, NHL, MLS and WNBA games were postponed this week after player-led actions in response to the shooting of African-American Jacob Blake and the civil unrest that has followed.

Washington were among the nine NFL sides to call off practice on Thursday as a show of support and Wright exclusively told Sky Sports News they would consider going a step further if required.

“It’s a pattern that has been done already. The mould has been broken,” said Wright.

“(Boycotting matches) is definitely a possibility. Our guys are thinking less about what they’re going to not do, but what they are going to do, and so it remains to be seen.

“I’m supportive of all the various ways that they would express their desire to have an impact on this topic, but right now they’re thinking more of what is it that we do in addition to playing great football on the field.”

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The Los Angeles Chargers and Tennessee Titans both spoke out for change as nine NFL sides postponed pre-season training sessions

The Los Angeles Chargers and Tennessee Titans both spoke out for change as nine NFL sides postponed pre-season training sessions

Wright says Washington’s goal is to create “a culture of inclusion and transparency” and was inspired by a discussion between the players and staff on Thursday.

“Guys on the team shared candidly and the most important thing about these moments is especially when black guys are sharing their experience of being black in this country, and it’s not dissimilar in the UK.

“The differential experience they had that’s only on race alone. The lightbulbs go off in their colleagues who didn’t know that.

“There was a level of understanding and awareness that came out of Thursday that now there’s a lot of momentum among the team, all people of all types and what they want to do, to use their platform to affect change.

“It was quite positive and it’s on us to make things happen.”

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Former Indianapolis head coach Tony Dungy and Mike Tirico of NBC Sports discuss the decision of some NFL teams to cancel practice sessions in solidarity with the NBA protest

Former Indianapolis head coach Tony Dungy and Mike Tirico of NBC Sports discuss the decision of some NFL teams to cancel practice sessions in solidarity with the NBA protest

When asked what impact the Blake shooting had on Washington’s players, Wright replied: “Like most folks, there is just a level of exasperation, frankly.

“Especially for our black athletes. This is not something they didn’t know about, or something they haven’t experienced at some level. They are just tired and ready to move to action.

“Even beyond our black athletes, there is a broader acknowledgement, awareness and desire to learn about these things among the coaching staff, the athletes and our business operations as well.

“There is a combination of exasperation and eagerness to move to action, with an openness in learning mindset that is going to be a good recipe for something special.”