New England Patriots: Tom Brady calls Donald Trump's comments 'just divisive'

By The Sports Xchange  |  Sept. 25, 2017 at 2:01 PM
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New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady on Monday morning called President Donald Trump's comments over the weekend "just divisive."

Trump lashed out while speaking at a political rally in Huntsville, Ala., on Friday night when he took on the NFL, and continued the attacks through the weekend on players protesting during the national anthem.

"Yeah, I certainly disagree with what he said," Brady said on Boston sports talk station WEEI during his weekly radio interview. "I thought it was just divisive. I just want to support my teammates. I am never one to say, 'Oh, that is wrong. That is right.' I do believe in what I believe in. I believe in bringing people together and respect and love and trust. Those are the values that my parents instilled in me and that's how I try to live every day."

Brady has been reluctant in the past to talk about his friendship with Trump. Brady used to display a "Make America Great Again" hat in his locker.

Brady's comments were different from how he handled a similar question after the Patriots' 36-33 victory over the Houston Texans at Gillette Stadium on Sunday. Brady said then that he didn't want to get into politics while speaking of the support he has for his teammates.

A group of 16 Patriots players -- all African-Americans -- kneeled and two other groups stood arm in arm. Brady had his right hand on his heart and left hand holding a football, with his left arm locked with wide receiver Phillip Dorsett, who is black.

Trump started his harsh words Friday night when he criticized NFL players who protest during the national anthem.

"We're proud of our country. We respect our flag," Trump said to loud applause at the campaign event in Alabama. "Wouldn't you love to see one of these NFL owners, when somebody disrespects our flag, to say, 'Get that son of a bitch off the field right now. He's fired! He's fired!'"

During his radio interview Monday, Brady was asked if he thought Trump had bigger things to worry about than whether a player kneels during the national anthem.

"I've been blessed to be in a locker room with guys from all over the United States over the course of my career. Some of my great friends are from Florida, Virginia, New York, Montana, Colorado, Texas," Brady said. "I think one thing about football is that it brings so many guys together, guys that you would never have the opportunity to be around, whether it was in college and all the way into the pros. We're all different. We're all unique. That's what makes us all so special."

Brady said he heard the fans at the Patriots' home stadium boo the players who kneeled, with some calling for them to stand up.

"No, I think everyone has a right to do whatever they want to do," Brady said on the radio show when asked if he was disappointed in the response. "If you don't agree with it, that's fine, you can voice your disagreement; I think that's great. It's part of our democracy, as long as it's done in a peaceful, respectful way. That's what this country has been all about."

Trump tweeted Monday morning his support for the fans who booed.

"Many people booed the players who kneeled yesterday (which was a small percentage of total). These are fans who demand respect for our Flag!"

Trump's comments over the weekend unified more NFL players kneeling during the anthem to protest racial injustice.

"Hopefully it brings everyone together. I think that is what unity and love -- like I said after the game, those are the things that concern me," Brady said Monday. "When you're in a locker room full of 53 players, you're working to a common goal. You support the guys that you play with and you support your coaches, coaches support you.

"You just do the best you can do. You're navigating through life. These things aren't easy. Everyone deals with different challenges in their life and you respect everyone's opinions and views. You don't have to agree with everything. It's hard to agree with your own wife on everything from day-to-day. I have so much respect for my teammates and what we're trying to accomplish. Hopefully we can keep marching toward this end of the season, keep making improvements, get better and win more football games."

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