A straw poll conducted among 43 NFL players found 100 percent of the 21 white players who participated would vote for Donald Trump, while 91 percent of the 22 black players would vote for Hillary Clinton.
Bleacher Report’s Mike Freeman reports that racial divide is causing tension for some teams.
A couple of unnamed black Buffalo Bills players took exception, for example, to coach Rex Ryan’s public support for Trump.
“There’s so many things I admire about Mr. Trump, but one thing I really admire about him is — you know what — he’ll say what’s on his mind,” Ryan said. “And so many times, you’ll see people — a lot of people — want to say the same thing. But there’s a big difference: They don’t have the courage to say it. They all think it, but they don’t have the courage to say it. And Donald Trump certainly has the courage to say it.”
Two black members of the Bills said the coach’s comments were disappointing.
“Rex is such an open-minded guy, a really good person,” one player said. “But the fact he could back someone as closed-minded as Trump genuinely shocked me.”
“I see Trump as someone who is hostile to people of color, and the fact that Rex supports him made me look at him completely differently, and not in a positive way,” another black Buffalo Bills player said.
The presidential race has taken its toll on some friendships, Freeman writes, including one long-time relationship between a Trump-supporting offensive lineman and a Clinton-supporting linebacker. The linebacker said he couldn’t hang out with someone who supports Trump.