Fly, Eagles, Fly. But not to the White House.
Three players on the Super Bowl-winning Philadelphia Eagles said they will skip celebrating their victory with President Trump during the traditional White House visit.
Safety Malcolm Jenkins, defensive end Chris Long, and receiver Torrey Smith have all said they will not attend.
I personally do not anticipate attending that, Jenkins said during an interview Monday on CNN.
Asked if he had a message for Trump, the Pro Bowler said no.
My message has been clear all year, he said. Im about, you know, creating positive change in the communities that I come from, whether it be Philadelphia, New Jersey, Ohio, Louisiana or this entire country.
Long, who opted against visiting the White House last year when he was playing for the New England Patriots after they won the Super Bowl, said hell beg out again this year.
During the build up to Super Bowl LII, Long volunteered that he wouldnt take part in a White House ceremony.
No, Im not going to the White House, Long said on the Pardon My Take podcast for Bartstool Sports. Are you kidding me?
Smith also said he wont attend, shooting back at Trumps criticism of players who took a knee during the playing of the national anthem this year as disrespecting the flag.
They call it the anthem protest, he said. Were not protesting the anthem. Its a protest during the anthem. I understand why people are mad, or may be offended when someone takes a knee.
Trump, who has tweeted congratulations to the Eagles for their 41-33 win over the Patriots, has also called on NFL owners to fire son of a bh players who protest during the playing of the Star Spangled Banner.
Former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick began taking a knee during the 2016 preseason saying he was protesting against racial inequality and injustice.