After video surfaced this week of Riley Cooper angrily saying the n-word to a security guard at a Kenny Chesney concert earlier this summer, the Eagles wide receiver announced that he would be “stepping away” from football for the time being on Friday.
ESPN’s Adam Schefter broke the news:
Embattled Eagles WR Riley Cooper announced he is stepping away from the team “for a period of time.”
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) August 2, 2013
Here’s an official statement from the Eagles and Cooper:
As we have said, Riley Cooper will be seeking counseling and we have excused him from all team activities. This is all new territory and we are going to evaluate this timetable every step of the way. He will meet with professionals provided by the Eagles during this period of time to better help him understand how his words have hurt so many, including his teammates.”
Riley Cooper released the following statement:
“The last few days have been incredibly difficult for me. My actions were inexcusable. The more I think about what I did, the more disgusted I get. I keep trying to figure out how I could have said something so repulsive, and what I can do to make things better.
Right now, I think it’s important for me to take some time to reflect on this situation. The organization and my teammates have been extremely supportive, but I also realize that there are people who will have a tough time forgiving me for what I’ve done. The best thing for me, and for the team, is to step away for a period of time.
During this time I’m going to be speaking with a variety of professionals to help me better understand how I could have done something that was so offensive, and how I can start the healing process for everyone. As long as it takes, and whatever I have to do, I’m going to try to make this right.”
Very interesting news. Seems like many of Cooper’s Eagles teammates weren’t at all happy with the receiver and the team is doing whatever they can to help avoid an internal mess within the locker room.
Immediately following the video going viral online, Cooper said that he was “ashamed and disgusted” at himself. Cooper also said he’s been having a tough time dealing with the incident and the backlash that has come from it, saying he’s had trouble eating and sleeping lately.
That being said, I’m pretty surprised that the guy who was projected to be the team’s #2 wideout is voluntarily taking himself out of football for a while. The big question now is…how long?