Goodell went to Instagram on Friday in response to the video “Stronger Together”, which includes many of the most famous league players who ask the university to take a strong stand in the wake of George Floyd’s death in Minneapolis.
“We, the National Football League, admit that we were wrong not to hear from the NFL players earlier and we encourage everyone to speak out and protest peacefully,” said Goodell.
“It was a difficult time for our country. In particular, the blacks in our country. First, my condolences to the families of George Floyd, Bruna Taylor, Ahmed Arbiri, and all the families who have suffered police brutality,” he says in the video.
In explaining the video, the NFL wrote: “We, the NFL, condemn racism and systematic repression by blacks. We, the NFL, acknowledge that we did not listen to NFL players earlier and encourage everyone to speak And peaceful protest, we, the NFL, believe that the issue of black life. #InspireChange “
The video was released by NFL Stars on Thursday and included the following players: Davanti Adams, Jamal Adams, Sakon Barclay, Anthony Barr, Odile Beckham Junior, Ezekiel Elliot, Stephon Gilmore, de Andre Hopkins, Eric Kendricks, Jarvis Landry, Marshon Latimore, Patrick Mahums , Matthew Terran, Patrick Peterson, Sterling Shephard, Michael Thomas, Deshawon Watson and Chase Young.
In the video, the players say: “So on behalf of the National Football League, this is what we want the players to hear. We, the National Football League, condemn racism and systematic oppression of blacks. We, the National Football League, admit wrongly to silence our players from protest Peaceful. We, the National Football League, believe black lives are important. “
Racism was an ongoing issue in the NFL, especially after former San Francisco midfielder Colin Caibernick began kneeling before matches while playing the national anthem to protest police brutality.
Goodell’s response comes after nearly a year of partnership with Jay-Z’s Roc Nation. The partnership established the Responsibility Program, an initiative that provides educational scholarships to families affected by injustice through the United States. The program created several public service announcements that released one of which featured Meek Mill and Dreamchasers.
A spokesman for NFL’s Inspire Change Program told CNN that the Legacy Grant Program was recently launched and that three grants have already been awarded to families of victims of police brutality: Botham Jean, Antwon Rose II and Danroy “DJ” Henry.
Faith Karimi from CNN contributed to this report.