The Eagles' DeSean Jackson tweeted a change of heart on Saturday and apologized for using a gay slur on a radio show instead of taking the defiant stance he started with.
During a call-in radio show on XM, Jackson snapped that a caller was a "gay ass faggot" for asking whether the wide receiver had "got his dick knocked in the dirt." Then Jackson posted two all-caps missives on Twitter when media reports were critical of his language. Those tweets have since been deleted.
"WANNA BRING ME DOWN BUT IM OK!!" he wrote in the now missing tweets. "THEY LOOKN 2 TAKE YA DOWN AT ALL TIMES NO MATTER HOW POSITIVE AND WHAT U DO!! ITS ALWAYS A WAY THEY TRY TO GET YA.... IM STANDIN TALL."
The new DeSean Jackson is repentant, and his font is calmer.
"I am sorry for using words that I know to be hurtful and unacceptable in a recent radio interview," he said in a string of tweets on Saturday. "I have made a mistake and would like to make it clear that words I used meant no disrespect to the Gay and Lesbian community. Intolerance is unacceptable and I apologize to anyone I have offended."
Earlier this year, basketball stars Kobe Bryant and Joakim Noah were ordered by the NBA to pay fines after using gay slurs to attack a referee and a fan while on the court.
Fans of Jackson were mystified by his behavior on the radio because it was another stark contrast. He had been known for an appearance on The View, where he and other Eagles players surprised a young fan who was the victim of brutal bullying. The shocked student wiped tears from his eyes as Jackson removed his jersey, signed it, and gave it to the student.
"This happens every day, and people are not brave enough to stand up and take this on," Jackson told him while admiring the boy's courage to talk about what happened.