Texans players respond to team owner's "inmate" comments.
Houston Texans star wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins reportedly walked out of the team's practice facility today in wake of comments made by team owner Bob McNair, who had said, "We can't let inmates run the prison" during a meeting about the ongoing national anthem protests.
According to ESPN, Hopkins was one of about 10 players who left the facility today as a direct response to McNair's comments. ESPN's Sarah Barshop reports that other Texans players considered staging a walkout but were ultimately talked out of it by the coaching staff.
Texans head coach Bill O'Brien briefed the players of McNair's comments at the morning meeting so they wouldn't be blindsided by the news and later led a 90-minute team meeting meeting along with GM Rick Smith and assistant head coach Romeo Crennel which allowed players an opportunity to speak out.
Texans offensive tackle Duane Brown had this to say about McNair's "inmates" label, per ESPN,
"I think the comments were disrespectful," Brown said. "I think it was ignorant. I think it was embarrassing. I think it angered a lot of players, including myself. We put our bodies and minds on the line every time we step on that field, and to use an analogy of inmates in prison, that's disrespectful. That's how I feel about it."
The Texans will travel to Seattle tomorrow for their Week 8 matchup against the Seahawks and O'Brien says Hopkins and others who walked out of the facility today will be traveling with the team.
According to Sarah Barshop, the Texans are planning to do something before Sunday's game but have not decided on anything yet.
Expectation now is all Texans, including Hopkins, will be with team Saturday, when it is scheduled to leave for Seattle. But we’ll see.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) October 27, 2017
The Texans will do something before Sunday’s game in Seattle but the team has not decided yet what that will be.— Sarah Barshop (@sarahbarshop) October 27, 2017
I don’t believe he is the only owner that feel that way... smh— Treston Decoud (@_TD31) October 27, 2017