Aaron Rodgers Steps Up Day After John Wall Comments
John Wall of the Wizards spoke out against President Trump during the Wizards Media Day. Teddy Owusu/DC Sports Box
On Monday, across the NBA, multiple players spoke out against President Trump’s comments on NFL players kneeling during the national anthem. At Wizards Media Day, point guard John Wall was vocal in his disagreement with the president’s comments.
 
“I don’t like anything he’s been saying. I don’t respect it. I feel like you can’t control what people want to do,” said Wall. “We have bigger issues in this world that you need to be focusing on instead of focusing on other people taking a knee. It means something more important, they’re doing it for a reason, and you can’t do nothing but respect their decision.”

Later during media day, Wall sat down for an exclusive interview with CSN and expanded on his thoughts, asking top quarterbacks in the NFL, specifically Tom Brady and Aaron Rodgers, to step up and be more vocal.

"Most of our franchise guys or big-time players in the league are African-Americans. You have Chris Paul, you have Dwyane Wade, you have Carmelo Anthony, you have LeBron James that went and talked at the ESPYs. Until the guys that are the face of the [NFL] -- African-American guys come from college and they're great quarterbacks. You get to the NFL, what do they try to do? Change our position. Why? Because franchise guys are quarterbacks.”
 
"So, you have guys like Tom Brady, Aaron Rodgers -- love those guys, very talented. Until those guys come out and speak, I don't think the NFL is going to make any adjustments…Until those guys in the NFL come up and stand up for Kaepernick and for those guys ... until they do that, I don't think anything's going to change."
 
Last weekend, Rodgers posted a picture of himself kneeling alongside some of his teammates on Instagram. The day after Wall made his comments, Rodgers asked fans at Lambeau Field to join the players in linking arms during the national anthem at their Thursday night game against the Chicago Bears.
 
Rodgers went on to say the act of linking arms is not about the military or people in uniform. He loves and supports those individuals but said the demonstration is about something bigger than that.

"This is about equality," Rodgers said Tuesday. "This is about unity and love and growing together as a society and starting a conversation around something that may be a little bit uncomfortable for people. But we've got to come together and talk about these things and grow as a community, as a connected group of individuals in our society, and we're going to continue to show love and unity, and this week we're going to ask the fans to join in as well and come together and show people that we can be connected and we can grow together."

Did Wall’s comments lead Rodgers to ask fans to join in on linking arms during the anthem? There’s no way to know for sure, but the fact that Rodgers decided to speak out a day after Wall’s comments made headlines, speaks volume.

Written by Hirdesh Matta