Mike Tomlin of the Pittsburgh Steelers has been among the head coaches in the NFL that have been vocal on their players protesting in 2020. In a conference call with the media, ESPN's Brooke Pryor shared that Tomlin endorses his players protesting next season.
Mike Tomlin says that he supports any action taken by his team, as long as it’s done thoughtfully — and that includes kneeling. pic.twitter.com/WDyhvDMYTI
— Brooke Pryor (@bepryor) June 23, 2020
Ever since the tragic death of George Floyd in police custody in May, athletes in all sports have begun speaking out against racial inequality. While protests were taking place, some teams even chose to attend them in solidarity with their respective communities.
On the other hand, plenty of teams have discussed the best possible route to protest in the 2020 season. Similar to what Colin Kaepernick did in 2016, it seems as if players are in agreement that kneeling would be the best solution.
Last month, Tomlin expressed that as an organization, the Steelers will support the players protesting and making statements on racial issues. Of course, Tomlin did point out that if players do protest, he wants them to do it in a thoughtful manner.
Over the past month, Bill O'Brien and Matt Patricia were among the first coaches to exclaim that they'd support their players kneeling in 2020. Since then, Tomlin and other coaches around the league have shared the same sentiment.
When Kaepernick chose to kneel in an attempt to speak out against racial issues in 2016, he didn't receive much support from his counterparts in the NFL. However, this time around, it appears that kneeling before games is going to be a popular choice for teams. Despite President Donald Trump and other fans criticizing players for kneeling, Tomlin is all for his players taking action by kneeling.