Emmitt Smith would “do something” in the name of social justice if he was playing in the NFL today.
Smith told the Fort Worth Star-Telegram in a story published Friday he would do what he thought was right. The Hall of Fame running back and the all-time leader in rushing yards said he would defend the right for justice just as he defended the Dallas Cowboys’ star from a showboating Terrell Owens.
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When asked if he would kneel, Smith replied: “Yeah, I think I would do something, just as much as I ran out there and defended that star when T.O. did what he did.”
Smith was referring to the moment in 2000 when he responded to Owens’ showboating at Texas Stadium.
“Why not? If I can defend the star, I definitely can defend the right for everybody to have equal justice.”
Smith said he was “proud” of players for standing up for justice and speaking out.
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“If I can defend the star, I can take a stand for social justice,” Smith said. “I have been a victim of it. It’s not like I am talking because something happened to George Floyd. Something happened to me more than one time, a couple of times it happened right here in Dallas. I’m talking from experience, not something I read in a book and saw on CNN.”
Cowboys defensive lineman Dontari Poe was the first Dallas player to kneel during the national anthem in Week 1 before the game against the Los Angeles Rams.
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Tyrone Crawford said before the season that the team gave players the “green light” to demonstrate.