Vancouverite, NFLer, and Canadian-U.S. dual citizen Christian Covington said he was “not shocked” Donald Trump hurled insults from the podium he holds as U.S. president. But through peaceful protest on the sports field, he and his teammates responded with a statement of their own.
“To be able to show a united front and link arms,” he said. “We wanted to promote love and unity.”
“You know what you get from a man like him,” the 23-year-old defensive end with the Houston Texans said about Trump, nothing there are more pressing demands elsewhere in the world, including natural disasters in Puerto Rico and Mexico, in addition to the fact his hometown of Houston has years’ worth of clean up following Hurricane Harvey.
“It’s a touchy subject because of everything that has been going on,” he said about racism and politics in the U.S. “It’s personal with me.”
Speaking with Perry Solkowski and Randip Janda today on Sportsnet 650 a day after he registered a sack against Tom Brady in a 36-33 loss to the Patriots, Covington said he was not part of the team’s discussions to lock arms during the U.S. anthem Sunday against New England in Foxborough but was pleased to show his solidarity. “The leaders of the team met up as a group,” he said.
As the son of CFL hall-of-famer and Hamilton Ticats defensive end Grover Covington, who was born in North Carolina, Covington said he heard his father’s stories from his childhood in the South and also has similar experiences having lived and played college and professional sport in Texas.
“You can call it a silent protest, you can call it whatever you want to call it, but hopefully at the end of the day it sheds more light on the issues at hand. We hope only good can come from this,” he said. “I can say it affected me. I am an NFLer as well.”