Former Dallas Cowboys great Emmitt Smith spoke out recently about his stance on the ongoing NFL protests during the pregame national anthem. The Hall of Famer stated that if he was still playing today, he would join the players in their protest and kneel as well.
Smith made his comments in an interview with the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, where he explained his take on the protests.
“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,” said Smith.
The former Cowboys running back referenced a famous altercation with Terrell Owens at midfield of the Cowboys stadium. Owens, a former San Francisco 49ers wide receiver, celebrated a touchdown by running to the iconic blue star at midfield in 2000.
When the Cowboys answered with their next touchdown, Smith ran to the blue star and slammed the ball down in the same spot while staring down the 49ers sideline. Later, Owens tried to recreate the TD celebration again after another touchdown. Except this time, Cowboys safety George Teague ran after Owens while he stood on the star and leveled him.
“If I can defend the star, I can take a stand for social justice,” Smith continued. “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.”
Twitter Goes Crazy Over Comments by Emmitt Smith
Smith said he feels a sense of pride when watching modern day players utilize their platform to bring awareness to social issues.
“I am inspired by these young cats,” said Smith. “There is no doubt NFL players are trying to do good in the community. Now, they are flexing their muscles in a different way. Voting happens to be one of the best ways to exercise your complete rights and really effect change through legislation and policies.”
Of course, opinions varied over Smith’s stance on the ongoing NFL protests during the national anthem. And that was definitely the case on Twitter as his comments made waves on social media.
Some fans supported Smith’s opinion and respected him for his stance. And others defended Smith from critics, albeit with some NSFW language.
In contrast, there was plenty of Twitter users that did not take Smith’s comments lightly. Even former fans of his shared harsh criticisms because of his take on the current NFL protests.
As always with these polarizing subjects, fans are clearly divided by the Cowboys legend’s comments.