NFL players Kenny Stills and Eric Reid have joined a chorus of people on social media who criticized NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell over the weekend for a statement he issued in response to the recent killing of George Floyd.

In the statement released on Twitter Saturday, Goodell wrote: “The NFL family is greatly saddened by the tragic events across our country. The protesters’ reactions to these incidents reflect the pain, anger and frustration that so many of us feel.”

Goodell then went on to note the recent killings of Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery and Breonna Taylor, saying: “As current events dramatically underscore, there remains much more to do as a country and as a league. These tragedies inform the NFL’s commitment and our ongoing efforts. There remains an urgent need for action. We recognize the power of our platform in communities and as part of the fabric of American society.”


“We embrace that responsibility and are committed to continuing the important work to address these systemic issues together with our players, clubs and partners,” he continued.

In less than 24 hours since the NFL tweeted Goodell’s response from its official account, the post has racked up roughly 23,000 likes and 22,000 comments, many of which criticize the commissioner for his statement on the recent tragedies and widespread protests given the league’s past track record.

“Save the bulls—t,” Stills, a wide receiver for the Houston Texans, tweeted in response to Goodell’s statement on Saturday. Reid, a safety and free agent who played for the San Francisco 49ers and Carolina Panthers, took aim at the league’s “Songs of the Season” effort in his response, tweeting: “I’m looking forward to ‘Songs of the Season 2.0.’”


The statement by Goodell also drew criticism from celebrities like filmmaker Ava DuVernay and rapper Bas among droves of others on social media who found the commissioner’s remarks "ironic" in light of its 2018 ban on on-field protests.



The policy, which was later halted following backlash at the time, required team and league personnel to “stand and show respect for the flag and the anthem” when on the field and said clubs would be “fined by the league if its personnel are on the field and do not stand and show respect for the flag and the anthem.”

The measure came roughly two years after former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick became the first NFL player to kneel during the national anthem before games to protest police brutality and the treatment of African Americans in the country. 

During the 2016 NFL season, and for long after, Kaepernick and other players who joined him in the anthem protests were targeted by President TrumpDonald TrumpWarren says Republican party 'eating itself and it is discovering that the meal is poisonous' More than 75 Asian, LGBTQ groups oppose anti-Asian crime bill McConnell says he's 'great admirer' of Liz Cheney but mum on her removal MORE and other conservatives who argued the demonstrations were unpatriotic. Kaepernick, who once led the 49ers to the Super Bowl in February 2013, hasn’t played in the league since that season.

He later filed for a grievance against the NFL, accusing league owners of colluding to keep him from playing again.

Last year, he and Reid, who at the time played for the Carolina Panthers, reached a settlement with the league over the grievance.