Bill Belichick reportedly had local ACLU leader speak to Patriots players
Bill Belichick has been the target of some criticism in recent weeks over his continued silence amid widespread discussions throughout the NFL concerning racial injustice, police brutality and the Black Lives Matter movement.
While he hasn’t made any public pronouncements amid the ongoing discussions, it appears that the New England Patriots head coach has been doing things behind the scenes to address the fallout from the death of George Floyd, an unarmed Black man who died on May 25 while in Minneapolis police custody.
According to Albert Breer of Sports Illustrated, Belichick recently had Rahsaan Hall, the director of the racial justice program at the ACLU of Massachusetts, speak with Patriots players.
Hall “addressed the team for an hour on Friday, giving them an education on racism in our country,” Breer wrote, noting that Patriots players thought Hall was “excellent, and spoke in great depth on the subject.”
Hall also met with the team last June, per Breer, speaking to Patriots rookies in during their rookie transition program, as shared in an NBC Sports Boston report.
Belichick certainly appears to be taking a proactive approach to handling the situation brought forth by Floyd’s death, at least from an organizational perspective.
Further reinforcing that narrative is how Patriots veteran Matthew Slater recently praised the coach for providing a forum in which players feel free to engage in a dialogue about such issues.
“I think Coach has a good, healthy understanding of the gravity of the situation and the times that we’re living in,” Slater said of Belichick during NBC Sports Boston’s “Next Pats Podcast” last week.
It remains to be seen whether or not Belichick issues a personal statement amid the ongoing dialogue, but it merits noting that the Patriots did so last week. In the statement, the Patriots organization shared how it was “horrified by the acts of racism we’ve witnessed” and expressed sympathy for the Floyd family.