Texans' Michael Thomas Designs 'End Racism' Shirts for Every NFL Player

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured ColumnistSeptember 10, 2020

Houston Texans safety Michael Thomas reaches out to make a catch while running a pass coverage drill during an NFL training camp football practice Monday, Aug. 24, 2020, in Houston. (Brett Coomer/Houston Chronicle via AP, Pool)
Brett Coomer/Associated Press

Houston Texans safety Michael Thomas helped design shirts to be worn by every NFL player in Week 1 that call for an end to racism.

"It's a message of unity while speaking directly to what we're fighting for in this movement," Thomas said of the purpose behind the shirts, per The Undefeated's Jerry Bembry.

Thomas is a vice president for the NFL Players Association. Bembry reported NFLPA senior manager Dior Ginyard had the organization reach out to Thomas and Texans teammate Kenny Stills about working on a social justice-themed shirt since Thomas has his own T-shirt company.

Thomas told Bembry he was inspired to join Colin Kaepernick's protest movement in 2016 after the former San Francisco 49ers quarterback explained he wanted to raise awareness of police brutality and systemic racism.

Thomas likewise felt compelled to take a knee during the anthem despite how it might adversely affect his NFL career.

"My wife is my backbone, and she said, 'I'm here with you, and if that's how you feel, you need to take a knee,'" he said to Bembry. "For me and Kenny, we knew we were taking a knee for the right thing and we wanted to be on the right side of history."

The shirts will be another way to convey the message behind Kaepernick's protests.

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