New York Giants running back Saquon Barkley and wide receiver Sterling Shepard reveal their team boycotting a game when the NFL season kicks off is not ruled out. In Week 1, the Giants are set to take on the Pittsburgh Steelers, in a game scheduled for September 14, Monday Night Football.
"I can't really just go and speak on behalf of the whole league, but, for us, that is something that we're going to talk about within our [social justice] groups, within our team," Barkley said, per ESPN.
"What's talked about in players meetings stays in players meetings." "That's something that we're going to talk about as a team. I'm not going to comment on that until we do so," Shepard said.
On Wednesday, the Milwaukee Bucks refused to take on the court for their Game 5 of the NBA playoffs against the Orlando Magic following the shooting of Jacob Blake. Blake, a Black man, was shot seven times by police in Kenosha, Wisconsin, and African-American athletes across the nation have called for justice.
Soon MLB, MLS, tennis games were boycotted. "Commend them (Bucks) for standing up, using their platform, using their voice," Barkley said.
Barkley says any African-American could find himself in similar position
"You can't look at it as, 'Oh, it's Jacob Blake,'" Barkley said.
"Obviously, I know he didn't pass away, but you have to be like, 'What if I were in that situation?' What if it was your brother, your cousin, what if it was [Shepard], what if it was Golden [Tate] or all those guys.
That is kind of the way I look at it." Barkley is one of the most popular NFL stars and he wants to use his platform and voice to call for positive changes. "I understand God put me in a position to be able to have a platform.
To be able to use my voice. I've been big on knowing my history, especially the athletes. The Bill Russells of the world, the Colin Kaepernicks of the world, and how they were able to handle those situations and use their voice," Barkley said.
"It creates conversation. You have to ask yourself: 'What can you do? What can you do?' "That is just the start. You have to spark those conversations and then take action. Find ways you can do. That is what we're trying to do with our team. And when we continue to find the right things to do, we'll continue to do it."