Roger Goodell Says NFL Was Wrong, Encourages Players ‘to speak out and peacefully protest’

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said Friday he and the league strongly support players expressing their opposition to inequality and police misconduct, saying the league’s leadership was “wrong” for ignoring players earlier and that it now endorses their peaceful protests.

“We, the National Football League condemn racism and the systematic oppression of black people,” Goodell said in a video released by the NFL. “We, the National Football League admit we were wrong for not listening to NFL players earlier, and encourage all to speak out and peacefully protest. We, the National Football League believe black lives matter.”   Roger”s  message came amid the nationwide protests over George Floyd’s death and with the controversy over NFL players’ protests during the national anthem having been reignited this week by comments by New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees. President Trump said earlier Friday that Brees should not have apologized for saying during an interview Wednesday with Yahoo Finance that he opposes players protesting during the anthem, calling such protests disrespectful to the flag and country.