NFL Reportedly Considering Social Justice Uniform Patches, Helmet Decals

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured ColumnistJuly 3, 2020

The 100th anniversary logo is shown above the NFL shield before an NFL wild-card playoff football game between the Buffalo Bills and Houston Texans Saturday, Jan. 4, 2020, in Houston. (AP Photo/Eric Christian Smith)
Eric Christian Smith/Associated Press

The NFL is reportedly considering allowing players to wear "decals on helmets or patches on jerseys" in honor of victims of systemic racism and police brutality, according to Jason Reid of The Undefeated. 

The league may also "produce educational programs about victims, among other plans."

NFL.com noted that if the decal idea was approved by the players and the league, "a player could wear a helmet decal with 'G.F.' for George Floyd, whose death in May while in Minneapolis police custody has sparked a global reckoning over police brutality and racial prejudice."

Reid also reported that the league is expected to play "Lift Ev'ry Voice And Sing" before the playing of "The Star-Spangled Banner" at the start of games. The song has traditionally been considered the Black national anthem.

The NFL announced earlier in June it would be committing $250 million over the next 10 years to combat systemic racism and support social justice causes and charities. NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell acknowledged that the league's response to many of those issues in recent years should have been better and that the league should have listened more to its players. 

That came in response to a video produced by a number of star players demanding changes around the league. 

Saquon Barkley @saquon

✊🏾 https://t.co/ltJwmjVVMW


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

Critics of the league will point out that Colin Kaepernick—who kneeled during the playing of the national anthem in 2016 in protest of racial discrimination and police brutality—remains unsigned and has been since the 2017 offseason. Kaepernick's supporters believe the quarterback was blackballed by the league's owners for his political beliefs. 

Goodell said earlier in June that if Kaepernick "wants to resume his career in the NFL, then obviously it's going to take a team to make that decision. But I welcome that, support a club making that decision and encourage them to do that."