Houston Texans defensive end Justin Reid has been impressed with coach Bill O'Brien's message and actions the last few weeks in regard to social activism. Since the death of George Floyd while in police custody, O'Brien has talked publicly and privately with the team about issues surrounding police brutality.
According to Reid, during the private meeting, O'Brien gave everyone on the Colts roster the chance to talk and give their opinions on the state of the country (via the Houston Chronicle):
“I’ve got all the respect in the world for OB. He had the public statement that he made publicly and also in a private team meeting. He let us have the opportunity to talk with him and give our opinion and feelings on what’s going on in the state of the country and what we can do about it. My true feelings are that him and Jack and all the other guys are sincere.”
Justin Reid's brother Eric Reid was the first player to join Colin Kaepernick in kneeling during the national anthem. Now that four years have passed, Justin hopes people now realize why the kneeling happened. Reid points out that it's not just African-Americans who deal with police brutality, every race does:
“It isn’t exclusive to only African Americans … It happens to all races: black, white, Hispanic, Asian. There’s just a tendency that it happens more to African-Americans. This is a real thing; it’s just been taboo. It’s finally being talked about. People are speaking up, and I think that’s huge. I think the next step for us is turning that raw energy into action, into changes of the structure of society, the structure of the police and their behavior, their accountability.”
O'Brien has been criticized for many of his personnel decisions the last few seasons, but it seems he's connected well with the players still on the Texans roster over the last few weeks.