– Michael Brown, 18 years old, shot 6 times by police over a box of stolen cigars.
– Tamir Rice, mere 12 years old, shot and killed by police after playing with a toy gun, which police claimed was real.
– Walter Scott, pulled over by police for a defective car light, shot and killed.
– Philando Castile, killed after reaching for his driver’s license after being pulled to the side of the road on a routine check by the police.
– Stephon Clark, shot 7 times and killed because cops feared he had a gun. All they found thereafter was a cell phone.
– Breonna Taylor, shot 8 times during a drug search at her home. No drugs were found.
– Eric Garner, choked to death for illegally selling cigarettes. As he was suffocating, he said “I can’t breathe”, at least 11 times.
Those are just a few instances of police brutality in a society that has been suffering from social injustice, oppression, and prejudice against black people for far, far too long.
Then came the murder of George Floyd. Despite being unarmed, handcuffed, and on his back, he was choked to death in 9 minutes. Once again, another man who repeatedly said “I can’t breathe”.
The man was 46-years-old and was calling for his mother with his last breath.
– His mother died 2 years ago.
Now, people have had enough. Protests are ongoing throughout America, and the world, as most corners of society are coming out to support the “Black Lives Matter” movement and fight against racism and injustice. In fact, Eagles held a team meeting shortly after the incident, sharing thoughts, speaking on the issue, and coming together as a team.
The Philadelphia Eagles have been involved in fighting against social injustice since early 2018, when they created the “Eagles Social Justice Fund”, helping Philadelphia citizens wrongfully accused. The fight against these injustices started long before this, with names like Malcolm Jenkins, Torrey Smith, and Chris Long, all standing up to use their platform to make a difference as individuals.
After the murder of George Floyd, Eagles have been one of the most vocal organizations in the NFL when it comes to spreading awareness and making a stand.
White team captains Carson Wentz and Zach Ertz take lead
Carson Wentz posted this tweet on May 29th. He acknowledges the institutional racism in the country, going on to empathize in an honest way, stating he can’t fathom what the black community goes through.
Carson followed this statement up with bible words and his analysis of what to draw from the wise words:
Zach Ertz, along with his wonderful wife, Julie Ertz, shared their thought and support as well:
Team owner Jeffrey Lurie “Silence is not an option”
Jeffrey Lurie has played a part in developing an Eagles team with a reputation as one of the most supportive in the NFL on social injustice. From his support in the community with the Eagles Social Justice Fund, to donating money to non-profit organizations, and standing with his players during anthem protests, Lurie is always wanting what’s best for his players and the wider community.
Lurie sent out a statement with the message that change needs to happen, and it needs to come from everyone, including the NFL.
Team meeting spark influence from Kelce, Elliot
After initially holding back from using social media to speak up on the issue, as Kelce thought it would seem like a move to become popular, he took to Instagram after DeSean Jackson spoke to the team on a zoom call.
Kelce had some insightful and respectful thoughts:
Eagles Kicker Jake Elliot also shared his thoughts after an eye-opener of a team meeting, listening to his teammates talk about their experiences with injustice in US
Fellow All-Pro OL Lane Johnson posted this picture, displaying captains of all colors for the Eagles saying “together”
Eagles All-Pro LG Brandon Brooks has been protesting in Philadelphia. He also posted a “Blackout” with the text “Forward Together”
Jordan Mailata, originally from Australia shared the “blackout” post as well on Instagram. Despite not growing up in American, he was inspired after his teammates talked on the zoom meeting. He wrote the following on his post:
Second year LT Andre Dillard with the “Blackout” post
Rookie T/G Jack Driscoll has not posted words of his own, but chose to RT an in depth video from Allen Greene, director of Athletics for Auburn Tigers, on the issue
DeSean Jackson leads the support from Eagles’ WRs and offensive skill
Desean Jackson writes in an Instagram post:
“As I continue to wrap my thoughts around the murder of #georgefloyd . I can’t seem to figure out what we have to do as black men. We have not been perfect but most definitely we are taking approach to better our selfs & community. As I raise 3 young black men, I can’t put my mind past the fairness we as African Americans should receive. I’m all about positivity & LOVE FOR ALL !! Never been a racist person towards any regardless of the circumstances!! 1 LoVE 2 All”DeSean Jackson on Floyd murder
In an interview with John Clark of NBC, DeSean Jackson has expressed major respect for QB Carson Wentz in speaking up about the issues.
New WR Marquise Goodwin with perspective on what it’s all about
Rookie WR Jalen Reagor shares his thoughts
Rookie QB Jalen Hurts posted the “Blackout” picture on his instagram with the following text:
“The Time Is Always Right To Do What Is Right. Be COMMITTED To Change, I’m All In. Black Lives Matter.
It Could’ve Been You.. It Could’ve Been Me .. We Are One.”Jalen Hurts in support of Black Lives Matter
Alshon Jeffery hasn’t been posting a lot himself, but has been active in RT messages of support for the protests
Rookie WR John Hightower with the “Blackout” support
TE Dallas Goedert from his Instagram
Secondary coming together
S Rodney McLeod, who has been a member of the Eagles Social Justice Fund since its origin, has been protesting in Philadelphia for multiple days.
CB Rasul Douglas comments on Malcolm Jenkins, mentioning why he was the leader in the Eagles’ secondary. The video was about what kneeling during the anthem meant
Sidney Jones after the death occured
New safety/hybrid CB Will Parks, who is originally from North Philadelphia, and has been working against gun violence, has been protesting in Philadelphia. Along with that, he is paying for school equipment for children in the area.
Jalen Mills highlights the frustration that a lot of people are dealing with
Rookie S/CB K’Von Wallace, who quickly became a fan favorite, is hurt by the situation as well
New star CB Darius Slay making it known that kneeling during the anthem was never about disrespecting the military, but police brutality and social injustice, as we are seeing now
Captain Cre’Von Leblanc
Running backs staying active in support
Second year Star Miles Sanders has been very active on a daily basis on Twitter. Specifically, he RT this video from Ashton Kutcher, explaining the importance of “Black Lives Matter”, and not saying “All Lives Matter” right now:
Boston Scott shares this quote on why it has come to anger and riots for some people:
Joining the Blackout
Instead of posting an all black image, Brandon Graham decided to put in a dark image with a picture of George Floyd fading in the background. Powerful stuff
Rookie LB Davion Taylor
Second year LB Duke Riley with the text “F**K racism”
Veteran LB Nathan Gerry
LB Alex Singleton
DE Shareef Miller
New Eagle DT Javon Hargrave
It’s really warming to see so many members of the Eagles organization doing their part to raise awareness and continue the fight against injustice at such an emotional time. The City of Philadelphia is lucky to have an owner like Jeffrey Lurie, a coaching staff so emotionally attached to its players, and a group of leaders and players who all want to push for a greater, kinder world.
Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports