Some Eagles players won't celebrate victory with White House invite
WASHINGTON (Sinclair Broadcast Group) - Winning the Super Bowl means players will get an opportunity to celebrate their victory at the White House.
But not everyone is accepting the offer.
"No. I personally do not anticipate attending that," Philadelphia Eagles safety Malcolm Jenkins told CNN Monday morning.
The ceremony is a tradition in which the president honors the hard work of the national victors.
When asked if he had a message for the president, Jenkins - a leader of the Players Coalition - said no, but that his message all year has been clear.
"I'm about creating positive change in the communities that I come from. Whether it be Philadelphia, New Jersey, Ohio, Louisiana, or this entire country. I want to see changes in our criminal justice system. I want to see us push for economical and educational advancement in communities of color and low-income communities, and I want to see our relationships between our communities and law enforcement be advanced. That's what myself and my peers have been pushing for the last two years. That's what I will continue to do."
Defensive end Chris Long also previously stated he would not attend, as did wide receiver Torrey Smith.
Other athletes have also taken a stand in the past, refusing to attend the ceremony.
Kevin Durant last year turned down the offer to celebrate the Golden State Warriors' NBA Championship win, telling ESPN at the time he didn't respect "who's in the office right now."
The president rescinded his offer, citing team mate Stephen Curry's hesitation at the time.
"I don't agree with what he agrees with, so my voice is going to be heard by not doing that. That's just me personally, but if I know my guys well enough, they'll all agree with me," Durant said.
Lindsey Vonn, competing in the upcoming Winter Olympics, also told reporters she wouldn't accept an invite to the White House if she were to win gold.
The professional skier told CNN she hoped "to represent the people of the United States, not the president."
Last year, Tom Brady didn't attend the Patriots' visit to the White House, though a statement from the all-star quarterback cited "personal family matters" as the reason he couldn't attend.
Brady's abscence however was not considered a protest, as he did note his support for Trump when he was running for office.