Tyrann Mathieu Remains Appreciative of Saints' Drew Brees

Joe Andrews

Kansas City Chiefs safety Tyrann Mathieu recalls celebrating the New Orleans Saints’ Super Bowl Championship on Bourbon Street 10 years ago.

Mathieu won’t forget the moment, despite Saints quarterback Drew Brees’ recent comments on kneeling during the national anthem, as the New Orleans native told reporters in a video conference Thursday. 

“He had been somebody I had admired met whole life,” Mathieu said. “I still remember the day he brought the championship to New Orleans, I was 17 or 18. I went straight to Bourbon Street. I had to go celebrate. I’ve watched him do so much for the community, so I still hold that respect for him.”

Mathieu joined several athletes in calling Brees out for his statement on social media June 3. 

Brees apologized a day later and has since conversed with Mathieu. The Honey Badger said he reached out to Brees, but did not go into the details of the discussion and said it was an important step in the fight against inequality.   

“It’s going to be important for guys like him to continue to speak up and fall forward,” Mathieu said. “He does so much for the community. He does so much for black folk, my folk, down in New Orleans. I'll always admire him. When I’m not there, he’s the one really holding that responsibility. It's going to be important for us to continue to fall forward together. Like I said, that's how I think we're going to be stronger together. That's how I think we'll see real change. It's a great world we live in, but I think it can be so much better. That's what I'm looking forward to.”

Both have recently publicly released initiatives to help New Orleans and the state of Louisiana. 

Last month, Brees and his wife Brittany announced a plan to donate $5 million, equivalent to 10,000 meals a day, through the end of 2020. 

Mathieu is paying a month of rent for four families as part of a mini-series in partnership with Zelle and Bleacher Report. The Tyrann Mathieu Foundation also supports New Orleans. 

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