Community activists send message to McNair, NFL at NRG Park

By Brandon Walker - Reporter

HOUSTON - As thousands packed NRG to watch the Texans take on the Arizona Cardinals, about 100 people showed up outside to support the players who are protesting racism within the league. 

Community activist Deric Muhammad, The Texas Organizing Project, local ministers and other community members participated in rally outside of NRG Sunday afternoon. 

The rally addressed several concerns.

The big one, protesters said, is Texans owner Bob McNair's comment during a team owners meeting: "We can't have the inmates running the prison."

McNair has apologized multiple times for what he reportedly said amid the backlash nationwide. 

That comment came during the height of controversy surrounding some players' decision to kneel during the singing of the national anthem to protest racism. 

Deric Muhammad said McNair's comment was racist and cannot be tolerated. 

"If Bob McNair sees the black men who make him millions of dollars for him every week as inmates, how in the hell do you think he see us?" Muhammad said. "Everybody needs justice, everybody need to come together on this man, we’re all one race, the human race. We shouldn’t let anything divide us, whether its politics, race or wealth, we shouldn’t let anything divide us."

Muhammad said the rally was also in support of former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick, who first sat during the anthem in 2016. 

The Texan released the following statement:

"We made it abundantly clear that Bob McNair was referring to the league office and its employees, not the players, when the statement in question was made. Bob McNair's many contributions to the community have been well documented. The Texans will continue to support our players commitment to the city through our year-round efforts to make a difference."

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