Dallas Cowboys defensive end Robert Quinn was asked Wednesday whether he would raise a fist during the national anthem and used the opportunity to lambast the media over the national anthem protests.
Quinn, who is expected to be active in his return to the Cowboys after serving a two-game suspension, lectured reporters over why players started to protest during the national anthem and how the media allegedly twisted the message.
“Why did the protest start?” Quinn asked reporters, according to the Dallas Morning-News. “Then what did you all turn it into? I'm asking you. You're media, right? You all took the message and made it into what you all wanted to make it. Now, I could sit there and beat this over the head, beat this over the head.”
He added: “Again, I'm not going back writing the story. At the end of the day, y'all know what's being done. Y'all see what's being done about it. You want to know what I'm about, you come speak to me in my personal space, not at work. And you'll see how I really roll.”
Quinn is one of a handful of active NFL players still protesting during the national anthem. Houston Texans wide receiver Kenny Stills, Miami Dolphins wide receiver Albert Wilson and Carolina Panthers defensive back Eric Reid kneel during the anthem.
In December, when Quinn was with the Dolphins, he complained about the lack of coverage for his protest during the national anthem.
“Y’all ignore it. Because when I gave my first message on trying to bring unity, y’all swept it under the rug. It’s not me. When you don’t give a problematic story, y’all just ran away,” he said at the time, according to the Miami Herald.
He vowed in an August 2018 Sports Illustrated profile that he wouldn’t stop protesting during the anthem “until they get rid of me.”