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Published: Thursday, October 05, 2017 @ 11:10 PM
CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton apologized in a Twitter video post Thursday night for sexist comments made to a female reporter.
“After careful thought, I understand that my word choice was extremely degrading and disrespectful to women," the Carolina Panthers quarterback said at the start of the nearly two-minute video. “To be honest, that was not my intentions. And if you are a person who took offense to what I said, I sincerely apologize to you.”
When Charlotte Observer reporter Jourdan Rodrigue asked Newton about wide receiver Devin Funchess’ route running Wednesday, Newton laughed and said, “It’s funny to hear a female talk about routes. It’s funny.”
The NFL released a statement Wednesday saying that Newton's response to the question was “just plain wrong and disrespectful to the exceptional female reporters and all journalists who cover our league.”
Dannon, the maker of Oikos yogurt, ended its endorsment with Newton on Thursday. Company spokesperson Michael Neuwirth released a statement saying it was “shocked and disheartened” at the former league MVP's behavior and comments.
Panthers coach Ron Rivera addressed the situation briefly during his press conference Thursday, saying, “I think Cam made a mistake. I understand he had a conversation where he pretty much said he shouldn't have said, what he said.”
Rodrigue issued a statement Wednesday evening saying she and Newton did speak after the news conference, but said the quarterback didn't apologize for his remarks.
Rodrigue was back in the locker room on Thursday, flanked by Mike Persinger, the executive sports editor of The Charlotte Observer. On Wednesday, Persinger said Newton's comments were “unfortunate and out of line.”
She issued an apology herself on Thursday after coming under fire for using a racial slur in tweets she posted about four years ago. The tweets were first reported by BlackSportsOnline.com.
“I apologize for the offensive tweets form my Twitter account from 4/5 years ago,” Rodrigue said on her Twitter page. “There is no excuse for these tweets and the sentiment behind them. I am deeply sorry and apologize.”
Rodrigue was a college student at Arizona State at the time of the tweets. When asked about the tweets, Persinger said “she has owned them and apologized for them.”
Published: Wednesday, July 11, 2018 @ 12:37 PM
Updated: Wednesday, July 11, 2018 @ 2:31 PM
— Former Cincinnati Bengal Adam “Pacman” Jones was assaulted by a contract worker at Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport, police said.
The ABM worker, identified as Frank Ragin, made a gesture toward Jones about 10 p.m. Tuesday, Atlanta police said. Jones confronted the man about what he meant by the gesture and the two began to argue, according to police.
ABM is a contractor that deals with airport building maintenance and facility services. The argument occurred on the airport’s concourse B, police said.
Ragin allegedly punched Jones, injuring his face. He also allegedly struck Jones’ companion, who has not been identified, injuring her hand.
Police said Jones, 34, a native of Atlanta, then pushed Ragin to the ground. Police eventually determined Ragin was the primary aggressor.
Ragin, who was charged with two counts of battery, was transported to a downtown Atlanta hospital to be treated for his injuries.
TMZ Sports obtained video of the incident. (Note: Video includes offensive language)
Jones and his companion declined medical treatment.
Jones, who was drafted in 2005 out of West Virginia by the Tennessee Titans, has also played for the Dallas Cowboys and Cincinnati Bengals. The cornerback played in nine games for the Bengals last season. He is currently a free agent.
Jones was arrested in January 2017, accused of assault, disorderly conduct and other charges related to an incident in Cincinnati's downtown entertainment district.
Jones was acquitted in 2013 on an assault charge in Hamilton County after a woman accused him of punching her in a nightclub. Earlier that year, he paid a fine for disorderly conduct after police accused him of making offensive comments during a traffic stop. He also pleaded guilty to disorderly conduct in January 2012 after an arrest at a Cincinnati bar.
Published: Tuesday, July 10, 2018 @ 1:15 PM
NFL owners approved the policy May 23. Under it, individual teams will have the ability to fine players and other personnel who do not stand and “show respect for the flag and the Anthem.”
At the time of the policy’s approval, the NFLPA issued a statement against it, saying the owners did not consult the union.
“NFL players have shown their patriotism through their social activism, their community service, in support of our military and law enforcement and yes, through their protests to raise awareness about the issues they care about,” the union said in a statement. “The vote by NFL club CEOs (May 23) contradicts the statements made to our player leadership by Commissioner Roger Goodell and the Chairman of the NFL’s Management Council John Mara about the principals, values and patriotism of our League.
“Our union will review the new ‘policy’ and challenge any aspect of it that is inconsistent with the collective bargaining agreement.”
In the NFLPA’s announcement Tuesday, the union said the policy infringes on players’ rights:
“Our union filed its non-injury grievance today on behalf of all players challenging the NFL’s recently imposed anthem policy. The union’s claim is that this new policy, imposed by the NFL’s governing body without consultation with the NFLPA, is inconsistent with the collective bargaining agreement and infringes on player rights.
“In advance of our filing today, we proposed to the NFL to begin confidential discussions with the NFLPA Executive Committee to find a solution to this issue instead of immediately proceeding with litigation. The NFL has agreed to proceed with those discussions and we look forward to starting them soon.”
Published: Monday, October 23, 2017 @ 12:06 PM
— President Donald Trump on Monday lamented what he called a lack of leadership in the NFL days after the league’s commissioner said no plans are in place to force football players to stand during the national anthem.
“Two dozen NFL players continue to kneel during the National Anthem, showing total disrespect to our Flag & Country,” Trump tweeted on Monday morning. “No leadership in NFL!”
Two dozen NFL players continue to kneel during the National Anthem, showing total disrespect to our Flag & Country. No leadership in NFL!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 23, 2017
NFL commissioner Roger Goddell said last week that he believes players “should” stand for the anthem, but that team owners and other officials are focused on understanding the issues that are prompting the protests. He said that players will not be penalized if they choose to kneel during the anthem.
"I think our clubs all see this the same way -- we want our players to stand, we're going to encourage them to stand and we're going to continue to work on these issues in the community," Goodell said Tuesday at a news conference following the Fall League Meeting in New York.
Former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick first started kneeling during the anthem last year, to protest police violence against minorities. The protest got mixed reactions, but other NFL players -- and players in other sports -- have since followed Kaepernick’s lead, to protest inequality.
“They're talking about criminal justice reform,” Goddell said last week. “They're talking about changes that, I think, will make our communities better -- that there's bipartisan support for and that need focus. … They're talking about equality issues, making sure we're doing everything we possibly can to give people an opportunity, whether it's an education or economic and what we can do to try to effectuate that. And we believe, with the players, that we can help them, we can support them. And those are our issues, national issues, American issues that are all important."
Trump suggested last month that NFL team owners should fire players who refuse to stand during the anthem, telling a crowd in Alabama that “that’s a total disrespect for our heritage.”
Published: Saturday, May 19, 2018 @ 12:22 PM
— Johnny Manziel is taking his football career north of the border.
The former Texas A&M star quarterback who had two disappointing seasons with the Cleveland Browns marred by off-the-field antics has signed a two-year-deal with the Canadian Football League.
Manziel will play for the Hamilton Tiger-Cats, the league announced Saturday. Manziel confirmed his decision on Twitter. "I believe this is the best opportunity for me moving forward and I’m eager for what the future holds," Manziel wrote.
Made the decision today to sign my contract with the CFL and further my football career after a long break. Very grateful for everyone that’s been supporting me along the way. I believe this is the best opportunity for me moving forward and I’m eager for what the future holds.— Johnny Manziel (@JManziel2) May 19, 2018
Manziel last played professional football in 2015. He has a 74.4 career quarterback rating in the NFL.