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NFL Commissioner Issues Statement on Death of George Floyd, Nationwide Protests

On Saturday, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell issued a statement in which he sent his condolences to the family of George Floyd, an unarmed black man who suffered and died in the custody of a white police officer in Minneapolis this past week. Goodell also addressed the ongoing nationwide protests that have occurred in the aftermath of Floyd’s murder.

The Commissioner’s statement reads as follows:

“The NFL family is greatly saddened by the tragic events across our country. The protesters’ reactions to these incidents reflect the pain, anger and frustration that so many of us feel.
Our deepest condolences go out to the family of Mr. George Floyd and to those who have lost loved ones, including the families of Ms. Breonna Taylor in Louisville, and Mr. Ahmaud Arbery, the cousin of Tracy Walker of the Detroit Lions.
As current events dramatically underscore, there remains much more to do as a country and as a league. These tragedies inform the NFL’s commitment and our ongoing efforts. There remains an urgent need for action. We recognize the power of our platform in communities and as part of the fabric of American society. We embrace that responsibility and are committed to continuing the important work to address these systemic issues together with our players, clubs and partners.”
Goodell is now the latest in a long line of sports figures to speak out against the tragic death of George Floyd after the video of his murder went viral on Monday. The video shows now former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin putting his knee in Floyd’s neck for almost eight minutes as Floyd begged and pleaded for the man to get off of him. During the video, you can clearly hear Floyd saying that he cannot breathe, yet Chauvin never moves his knee.
The commissioner also mentions the deaths of Ahmaud Arbery and Breonna Taylor in his statement. Arbery was killed while jogging in his neighborhood in Georgia by two white men who believed him to be a criminal; while Taylor was shot eight times and killed in her Louisville home in the middle of the night by police who were conducting a narcotics investigation. No drugs were found in the home of Taylor, who was working as an EMT for the city.
It is great that the commissioner of the most popular sports league has spoken out against these tragedies, but at the end of the day words are just wind. Action is needed and has been needed for many years now. It will be interesting to see how Goodell and the rest of the NFL step up during these incredibly challenging times.

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