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Aaron Rodgers Explains Why NFL Discouraging Players From Speaking Out on Social Issues

I see Michael Bennett got a few guys riled up?

Finally responding to the Seattle Seahawks star defensive end calling out some big names around the league, Aaron Rodgers said believes NFL players should speak out on social issues more often, but cited the league’s culture as the reason they don’t.

Rodgers told ESPN Wisconsin’s “Wilde & Tausch” that he was aware of Bennett’s criticism, and actually agreed with him, but also insinuated it can’t be a forced reaction either.

“One-hundred percent. And I think it starts with leadership,” Rodgers said. “I think [NBA commissioner Adam Silver] has done a good job promoting that type of environment. And I think some guys in the NFL are probably worried about repercussions on speaking their mind from the league.

“It’s got to be natural, it’s got to be authentic, and I think those guys did a really good job. It was a great message. The thing I’ll say in reference to speaking your mind, [I read] a piece on the Bennetts recently — Michael and Martellus. And I turned to a friend and I said, ‘Why do we have to say that it’s refreshing when someone speaks their mind? Or is honest now?’ I think that’s kind of a societal issue that we have.

“We need more guys like that who feel comfortable speaking their mind.”

Rodgers also admitted that he’s been quiet on a ton of issues as well, backpedaling when it came to answering questions about the civil unrest in Milwaukee.

“Those guys are doing it and they feel comfortable doing it,” Rodgers said. “I think if more guys maybe did in our league, it would create a domino effect possibly.

“I don’t know the specifics about it, but I do know that our heart goes out to those affected down there. This is a connected world. Anytime there’s a disconnect like that, it’s disappointing to see. Our thoughts and our prayers go with all of those affected, and we hope that the violence doesn’t continue down there.”

Aaron’s still a work in progress.

-- Glenn Erby

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