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Antonio Cromartie: Kneeling Got Me Cut, Ended My NFL Career | Untold Stories

– Do you think it ended your career? – 100 percent. 100 percent. And it ain’t have nothin’ to do with my age, it ain’t have nothin’ to do with my style of play: It was because I took a knee. ♪♪♪ What’s happenin’, man? – Antonio Cromartie! – What’s good witcha? – How you doin’, man? – Man, I can’t call it. – Since you in my crib, I’mma be an honest guest and go ahead—a generous guest— – Yo crib? – Whatever, you can go ahead and rack for me real quick. – Oh. – Some chalk, you need some? – I don’t even need no chalk. – Oh, you don’t need no chalk? – Nah, man. – Gonna chalk it up. – For what? For you to get beat anyway? – Go ahead, bro. Talkin’ all that noise. – Yeahhh, buddy. – Everybody’ll talk noise, but— – Yep, we talk a lil’ noise. That’s what us Florida boys do. – In 2016, you’re with the Colts. That’s the same year Colin Kaepernick took a knee to protest police brutality and social injustice. You took a knee—explain to me how that season played out for you. – I could give you a story: We are in a team meeting room, and…Coach Pagano gets up and says, “Look, guys. I know you guys all wanna do somethin’. I don’t want you guys takin’ a knee.” Like, “What? Don’t take a knee?” Like, “Whatchu mean, not take a knee?” He’s like, “Well, guys, look. When we go out on the football field, it’s about football.” – Mmm. – I say, “So, but—” And I turned around to some of the guys and I, and I spoke to ‘em. I’m just like, “So, when it’s about leukemia and your cancer, it’s cool. But when it’s about police brutality and social injustice, it’s not cool,” you know what I’m sayin’? And I told Chuck Pagano that. You know, I’m just like, “Man, that’s, that’s—” I told him straight up, “That’s bullshit.” You know, it’s, it’s, ”Oh, you know, football is bigger than, bigger than what’s goin’ on the outside.” No, it ain’t. How about respecting the guys that’s gettin’ murdered and killed by police officers? And not sayin’ that all police officers are bad. But you get some, they get that—they get a lil’ power in their hand, and they abuse the power. I have six sons. You know what I’m sayin’? Like, what if my son was in the car? Or what if my son was walkin’ around? And he get, and he get shot? Over nothin’? So, that was my logic. That was my thinkin’ into it. Not because, “Oh, you know, it’s, it’s the NFL.” – Take me through the day when you took a knee. Who were you playing, what week was it? – Week 3, Week 4 is when I took a knee. Cuz I actually wanted a little more detail. I wanted to ask my grandfather about it, who served in the Marines. Uh, talked to some family members that actually was, you know, that was part—that was in the Army, and do they feel— did they feel, like, in it, was there any disrespect, you know? And the biggest thing that came out was like, “No. We don’t agree with it, but our thing is, that’s what we, that’s what we fought for.” – Yeah. – You know what I’m sayin’? “We fought for you to, to serve that purpose, to go out and protest and have that freedom of speech and everything else.” So Week 3, we playin’ the San Diego Chargers. I can remember me right before the national anthem, first time I took a knee. And what’s funny is, two or three of the executive guys were standing behind me, and they was like, “Cro, get up!” I was like, “Man, fuck y’all! I’m not gettin’ up!” – Wow, they told you that? – Yeah, they said, “Get up.” What they end up doin’ was, one guy was standing here, one guy was standing here, one guy was standing here, and another guy was standing here. One person even had a towel to try to block it, you know, for nobody wantin’ to take a picture, but they already had took a picture. – And then, Week 4, we are in London. So we’re playin’ in London. – Mhmm. – And they came up to me before the game and was like, “Hey, Cro, please don’t take a knee.” It’s like, “Man, y’all better get out my face.” You know, y’all not fittin’ to sit here and tell me what I can and cannot do. I got, actually got benched that game. I got pulled out, halftime, and didn’t play the second half at all. – Why was that? – They say it was cuz of my play, but I was like, “You gave up four, four—” I said, “You give up four catches for 35 yards and a one-yard touchdown off a turnover that your quarterback threw?” C’mon, man. Two days after I took a knee I get like three or four phone calls. I’m like, “Hey, who the hell these people that’s callin’ my phone?” I don’t recognize the number, so I ended up answering the phone. It was like, “Hey, yo, you in the facility?” I was like, “Yeah, why? What’s up?” “Oh, uh, Chuck Pagano wanna see you.” I was like, “All right, cool.” So they come to get me. It was like, “Uh, you got your playbook?” You know, I looked up like, “What?! Do I got my playbook?” – Wow. – “Yeah, I got my playbook. Why?” Now it’s like, “All right, cool. Lemme go talk to Chuck.” So we get in there, and he goes into this whole spiel: “Uh, you know—hey, you know, we’re releasing you because our guys are gettin’ healthy.” I’m like, “Dude, ain’t nobody healthy in the back end at all.” It’s like, “Man, you ain’t gotta lie to me. Just tell me the truth.” Only thing—only reason I wanted him to say really what he would’ve said, but he wouldn’t say it. I was like, so, I was like, “So, wow, I’m gettin’ released for takin’ a knee?” He’s like, “Nah, you know, it’s not that.” – Mmm. – “You know, you just—you know, we just feel like we gettin’ healthy.” – Yeah. – I said, “Man, y’all ain’t finna sit here and just pay me three million damn dollars to now to release me and then talkin’ about y’all just gettin’ healthy.” I said, “That don’t even make sense, Chuck.” I said, “But it’s cool.” [Laughing] I said, yo, I said, “You boutta get fired anyway.” Straight like that. – How’d he respond to that? – He ain’t say nothin’. He ain’t say nothin’. And guess what, guess what end up happenin’? – What happened? – He got fired. Him and the damn GM. – How you think your decision to take a knee affected your career? – Oh, it affected it big-time. It ain’t have nothin’ to do with my age, it ain’t have nothin’ to do with my style of play: It was because I took a knee. October 2nd was my last game. I got one workout that whole entire time. And that was by the Saints in 2017. – Do you regret that decision at all? – Nope. Don’t regret it at all. Nah, don’t—why, why should I? Cuz at the end of the day, only thing we did was give people a voice that didn’t have a voice. And it brought more attention to what really was goin’ on, and now everyone’s talkin’ about it. But there’s still no solution because it’s still goin’ on. What’s crazy about that is, we got death threats. Death threats really don’t matter to me. [Laughing] It was, like, but—it’s just, like, you know, you get guys that say they’re about somethin’ and they wanna stand for somethin’. But they won’t do nothin’. The NFL is 75 percent black. If all black players walked off the field one day, what they gonna have? You know what I’m sayin’? How much money will they lose if you stand together? Thanks for kickin’ it with us. Subscribe to B/R to check out more dope videos like this one.

100 Replies to “Antonio Cromartie: Kneeling Got Me Cut, Ended My NFL Career | Untold Stories”

  • " Y'all better get out of my face "
    You don't have a constitutional right the protest anything (at your workplace) while being paid.
    That's why you see striking workers on a public sidewalk, no different than a protest.

  • When Martin Luther King marched, he had a few white people marching with him. Can somebody point out a white person in the NFL that was kneeling with the cause of color people being gunned down?? It shows their true character of racism there. Even Stevie Wonder can see that a mile away😎 …Yes my brothers, you can laugh with them while playing sports together, but our oppressor offspring are still like their grandparents, but hiding behind a jersey number😩

  • I remember that London game. Bro you committed like 3 flags in one drive that’s why you got benched lol. Went shopping in Paris when you were supposed to stay with the team. Lmao oh boy 🤦‍♂️

  • The supreme joke in all of this is that the "issue" all these men are kneeling over — police brutality directed disproportionately at black men — has no basis in reality. Kneeling has to be the absolute laziest form of activism in existence. And the fact that the people doing it are millionaires makes the scenario all the more bizarre.

    Of the many, many issues plaguing the black community, police brutality and racial oppression are absolutely nowhere near the top of that list. They are barely on the radar. But instead of speaking out against the epidemic of black on black murder, or the plague of fatherless children raised by uneducated teenage mothers who are perpetually dependent on the state for everything, you idiots prefer to pretend that racism is somehow a major stumbling block to black success because then you are not required to take responsibility for your lives or your actions. You are lazy, ignorant wannabe victims and it is pathetic.

    This "Woke" bullshit needs to end.

  • He’s sooooo salty. Hard not to have a mini psychiatric evaluation in my head watching this. Tone, body language, spite for Chuck and Grigson. These guys are put on pedestals and treated like super hero’s but they really are only human. I’m sure it’s tough for these athletes mentally as they exit the spotlight while others enter. Especially ones that won’t be remembered for generations like HOFers will be. The ego never dies. Interesting.

  • As an army combat veteran, who do all these players talk to that tells them it's acceptable to do anything but stand in silence for the national anthem?

  • What he said at the end is the truest shit. But you can’t ever get black people to unite for a greater purpose because they don’t wanna loose money. If every black person in the league just was like I’m not going to work today you can’t tell me change wouldn’t happen

  • Now you're unemployed by the NFL, idiot. Was it worth it? Retarded ass dude. Let me give up a 7 figure salary to make a point that don't matter anyway. Smh

  • 14 kids you got homie you better find out where to get more money cause you gonna be paying $500,000 per month in child support from all those stripper hoes you knocked up.

  • He really gonna do blame it on taking a knee. If he wanted to make a statement, do it somewhere outside of football, and respect the people the gave up their lives to protect America.

  • Antonio sacrificed his career by being a follower. I wouldn't have taken a knee. That's already been done. I would be more original with my protesting.

  • I didn’t know this happened to Cro at all. That just proves the politics of the NFL .. I got so much respect for Cro for this ✊🏾

  • Too many black players dont recognize who their true enemy is. Holding hands with them will always taint your coffee.

  • The flag doesn't makeup a country the people do! Stop changing the narrative to fit your agenda which is being racist and using a flag and national anthem as a cover! It's pathetic.

  • Love everything his said, we as black ppl are not given a voice under this system called the white supremacy system, if we stand we wrong if we kneel we wrong well damn what is correct(silence).

  • I’d say Respect Due if he wasn’t taking advantage of the situation.

    He was @ the end of his career & giving up big plays.

    He was even signed a few seasons prior he went without being signed before being back in the NFL for another 4years and then this release.

    I know it had something to do with it but it wasn’t the reason.

    It was the tipping point.

    There wasn’t any reason to keep him if he’s doing everything the team asks him not to do like not staying with the team in Paris, getting flagged multiple times because his heads not in the game plus he keeps giving up BIG PLAYS all on top of drawing the media scrutiny so there you go.

    Coaches can’t let a player like that continue to step out on the team.
    All he was doing was being a distraction and not even close to the player he was many years earlier and there were some years that had him In the dog house in the middle of his career too.

  • The NFL will keep going with our without you.

    Obviously because you’re gone and it’s obviously been that way for any & every player but other than that statement.

    I’m not even a big fan of the NFL but it’s obvious it keeps going.

    People have tried to break NFL many times over its history.

    Otherwise Respect Due.
    I appreciate your stand for what’s right.

    Now get someone like LeBron to do it for Honk Kong & China as well as situations in The US.

    1 Love

  • A lot of the unsympathetic people on this post would have most likely been giving him additional death threats. Fuck the haters and what they have to say, police brutality is a real actual issue

  • Being old and wore out is why you lost your job. You had a good career but your play was just going downhill. Dont make any excuses and try to become relevant cause you know your career is over. 4 catches and a TD is 4 catches too much . lol

  • We kill each other more then cops, we have more social injustice then what the white can offer us. This is our country too and we worked for it but kneeling did not work how about we cut out the problem like cancer say hey we know what we gotta do and do it. Lets leave the flag out and focus on our communities.

  • Much Love my Handsome Strong Black Brotha!! 💕❤️ Antonio Cromartie! Wish we had more NFL brothas like you!!

  • The league only care about the benefit of the owners its a modern day plantation if all the black players leave it won’t be no league ✊🏾

  • Some of y’all must of not watched that London game this dude was washed and got lucky to even get picked up by the colts at the time

  • Is this not them all industries!?!?

    Oppression, Bigotry, Discrimination, Character Assassination, Economic terrorism, violent deceivers….. aka 👹

  • He couldn't properly articulate a single point..SMH. He was one of the best CB's in the league but the last couple of years leading up to his release from the Colts he was trash..FACTS. All backed up by sports reports and stats for all the folks that may think different so look it up. Colts signed him as insurance they had their crew at corner but 4 of their CB's went down. His poor play in addition to returning players and his "F" y'all this is BS, you getting fired anyway behavior toward his team got him the axe. BTW Chuck Pagano still has a job (Bears DC) and so does the former GM Ryan Grigson (Seattle Seahawks Front Office) For the most part, many players around the league who protested still play…Moving On

  • As a colts fan I think taking a knee might have ended his colts career but not his NFL career. 1st there are other players in the nfl who took a knee and are still playing (some for the colts). 2nd if he was still that guy who went to the pro bowl another team would have signed him. You see the Seahawks still tried to get AB after all the drama he caused, why… cuz he still a great player… production vs tolerance …

  • This is why I don’t watch nfl football games anymore. I prevented my children from buying and playing madden since 2017 also. We are much better for it.

  • Owners could give a shit about your cause as long as it isnt costing him any money. The moment it does, you're expendable.

  • Let's be honest here: if not for the minorities, sports would be nothing more than a pickup game on TV. No skills or athleticism at all just boring and bland. It's been proven throughout history that y'all wait until another culture create something you like and you do whatever it takes to steal it and make it yours…..kinda like y'all stole this land from native Americans

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