Tom Brady has mastered the art of doing just enough and also not doing enough when it comes to addressing the social issues affecting the country today. In light of Donald Trump's remarks over the weekend condemning the national anthem protests by players around the NFL, Brady commented on the matter in his weekly interview on WEEI's Kirk and Callahan radio show. "I certainly disagree with what he said," Brady said. "I thought it was just divisive."
Brady's response is not only safe, it's not surprising. The New England Patriots star quarterback has interests to protect. He has endorsements with Movado, Under Armour, and Ugg that he will not throw away over an issue he doesn't wholeheartedly believe in. He has a friend in the White House who he will not throw under the bus, regardless of how ignorant his remarks may be. But, as one of the most visible players in the league, Brady knows that he cannot just fly under the radar as players start taking sides. He needs to be a part of the discussion, so he straddles the fence.
When Brady locked arms with his teammates during the playing of the national anthem on Sunday, instead of kneeling, Trump tweeted out his approval.
Though it may be true that you can't make everyone happy, Brady is definitely trying. Brady, the league's golden child, has been elevated to a storybook tale of a player taken in the sixth round who made it to the mountaintop.
While the actions of every NFL player of color is gone over with a fine-tooth comb, Brady is rarely questioned by his own teammates about his friendship with Trump, the same person who spawned the divisive rhetoric that Brady has supposedly spoken out against. If Brady is serious about supporting the NFL players' peaceful protest against the murdering of black people at the hands of law enforcement, he would do something more than just play it safe.
If the past is any indication, that day will most likely never come.