Terrell Owens on Hall of Fame, Kaepernick, and lack of Black owners in the NFL

Photo Credit: Terrell Owens’ Instagram (@terrellowens)

Terrell Owens will be remembered as one of the greatest wide receivers to ever play the game of football. Throughout his career in the NFL, Owens was a force on the football field while never hesitating to speak his mind off the field.

But even with his accolades between the lines, Owens was snubbed twice by Hall of Fame voters. However, Owens finally received what he deserved when it was announced that he would be inducted into the 2018 Hall of Fame.

Since his gridiron career ended, Owens has trained younger stars such as Julio Jones, he’s delved into acting, and he’s also served as a host and speaker for Raging Bull Millionaire Roadmap Series. An initiative started by Jason Bond, the Raging Bull Millionaire Roadmap Series seeks to help participants better understand how to build wealth through investing.

Before the event took place in Atlanta, Owens spoke about being inducted into the Hall of Fame, Colin Kaepernick, and the lack of Black ownership in the NFL.

How does it feel to finally be recognized for your achievements by being inducted into the Hall of Fame?

This is my third time on the ballot, so I guess third time’s [the] charm. I think everybody was kind of frustrated at the idea of me not being in two years prior. I was actually in Los Angeles when I got the call. It’s an honor to be called a Hall of Famer [and] to [and to have people acknowledge] what I have been able to accomplish in 15 years. There was a lot of work that I put in to be called a Hall of Famer. It’s an honor to be included with guys such as Bobby Beathard, Jerry Kramer, Randy Moss, Ray Lewis, Brian Dawkins and Brian Urlacher.

What are your thoughts on the stance that Colin Kaepernick has taken and the backlash he’s received?

As a country, obviously there have been strides that have been made and I think he was at the forefront of that movement.  We’re not where we want to be. If you look at Colin Kaepernick’s stance on oppression and social injustice, [those] are things Martin Luther King spoke about 50 years ago. If we adopt some of that passion and the mindset Dr. King took a stand for, we’ll get there. It’s not something that’s going to happen overnight. Obviously, I think with the necessary people put in place to make those changes, I think it’ll eventually happen. Athletes today have so many platforms that we are able to take advantage and continue with that movement.

If Dr. King were alive today, how do you think he would react to some of the athletes who speak out against injustice?

That’s a good question. I definitely think that he would be at the forefront of a lot of these movements. Obviously, he could offer his assistance and advice on the right things to do. But again, I think the guys that are making these stances now have been predicated on what he stood for and what he started years ago. And so at the end of the day, it’s up to us as Americans,  especially Black Americans, to try to keep that dream alive.

Even with the progress being made on the field, there’s still a lack of minority owners in the NFL. Is there a chance for that to change?

I don’t know. We just gotta keep forging ahead. Eventually, it has to happen. I think at the end of the day, Black athletes have a lot of leverage and power that we probably don’t realize that we have. It’s just a matter of collectively uniting together and then making something happen. We’re making strides and thinking about how certain people in positions try to keep us as Black Americans at bay. So we just have to be smart about our movements and make it happen.

 

 

A.R. Shaw
A.R. Shaw

A.R. Shaw is an author and journalist who documents culture, politics, and entertainment. He has covered The Obama White House, the summer Olympics in London, and currently serves as Lifestyle Editor for Rolling Out magazine. Follow his journey on Twitter @arshaw and Instagram @arshaw23.

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