If timing is everything, then the NFL’s New York Giants did everything Sunday to send a message to haters in Texas that the team supports LGBT rights. A YouTube video featuring the rough and tough members of the Giants was released. encouraging LGBT coaches and athletes to be proud of who they are and not be discouraged from participating in team sports.
Six Giants took part in making this first You Can Play video, including Victor Cruz and Prince Amukamara along with former Giants David Diehl and Hall of Famer Harry Carson, as the New York Daily News reported.
“The New York Giants believe that all athletes should be afforded equal opportunity, and judged only by their talent, character and work ethic,” says Zak DeOssie in the video.
“We are thrilled that the Giants are leading the charge in the NFL for LGBT inclusion,” said Wade Davis, the You Can Play organization’s executive director and a former NFL player.
“The entire Giants organization has committed to inclusion for all, including LGBT athletes and fans. The vocal support of alumni like Harry Carson, the Giants’ front office staff, and current players sends a giant message to all sports fans, especially young fans everywhere.”
Although the Giants don't have any out players on their team — in fact, right now, no NFL team has a player or coach who is out — there was, last year. Michael Sam was the first openly gay player drafted by an NFL team, the St Louis Rams. He was cut, and then made the Dallas Cowboys's practice team, before getting cut again. Sam was signed by a Canadian team before deciding to retire from pro football, citing mental health concerns.
The Giants's video comes on the heels of a controversy involving the owner of the Houston Texans, who has come under fire for his $10,000 donation to the campaign to repeal the Houston Equal Rights Ordinance.
As The Advocate reported last week, Bob McNair now wants his money back.
“I do not believe in or tolerate personal or professional discrimination of any kind,” McNair reportedly said in a statement. “I also believe that we Houstonians should have an ordinance that unites our community and provides a bold statement of non-discrimination. I encourage all Houstonians to vote on November 3.”
And just to make sure Texans got the Giants's message of inclusivity, Big Blue beat that other football team from Texas on Sunday, the Dallas Cowboys, 27 to 20 at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J.
Watch the You Can Play Project video, below.