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Jaguars' Leonard Fournette Organizes Protest with Jacksonville Police, Mayor

Mike Chiari@mikechiariFeatured ColumnistJune 9, 2020

Jacksonville Jaguars running back Leonard Fournette carries the ball during the first half of an NFL football game against the Oakland Raiders in Oakland, Calif., Sunday, Dec. 15, 2019. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)
Ben Margot/Associated Press

Jacksonville Jaguars running back Leonard Fournette worked with the Jacksonville Police Department and Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry to organize a protest for 10 a.m. ET on Tuesday, according to ESPN's Adam Schefter.

Fournette tweeted the following regarding the protest:

7⃣ Leonard Fournette @_fournette

Can’t wait for this protest in Duvall see you Guys in the morning for 10am let’s be great

Fournette's protest will be the latest in a long line that have taken place across the United States over the past two weeks. Many have protested against racial inequality and police brutality since the death of George Floyd while in police custody in Minneapolis on May 25.

Tad Dickman @TDickman89

To all the professional athletes, please use your platforms to effect change. @_fournette, thank you for setting an example. All started with a tweet ⤵️ https://t.co/gKQAurSAqa https://t.co/Hw3TFkh2AV

Floyd was pronounced dead after Officer Derek Chauvin had his knee pressed against the back of his neck for nearly nine minutes while Floyd was facedown on the ground and in handcuffs. Floyd said on multiple occasions that he couldn't breathe, but Chauvin didn't relent.

Chauvin was subsequently fired, arrested and charged with second-degree murder, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter. The other three officers on the scene—Thomas Lane, J.A. Keung and Tou Thao—were charged with aiding and abetting.

NFL players have been at the forefront of protesting racial inequality, police brutality and social injustice for years, dating back to then-San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick kneeling during the national anthem in 2016.

The NFL did not support Kaepernick at the time, but Commissioner Roger Goodell said last week that the league was "wrong" and now stands firmly in favor of the Black Lives Matter movement:

NFL @NFL

We, the NFL, condemn racism and the systematic oppression of Black People. We, the NFL, admit we were wrong for not listening to NFL players earlier and encourage all to speak out and peacefully protest. We, the NFL, believe Black Lives Matter. #InspireChange https://t.co/ENWQP8A0sv

Several prominent NFL players have spoken out against the factors that led to Floyd's death and participated in protests over the past two weeks.

The Denver Broncos protested as a team last week in downtown Denver:

Denver Broncos @Broncos

#StrongerTogether https://t.co/SqgUXRrM0n

Mike Klis of 9News reported that 50 Broncos players and all 25 of the team's coaches marched together as part of the protest.

The 25-year-old Fournette is about to enter his fourth season with the Jaguars, and it could be his final campaign in Jacksonville as well since the team declined the fifth-year option in his contract.

Fournette is coming off a career year, as he rushed for 1,152 yards and three touchdowns while also catching 76 passes for 522 yards last season.

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