Arian Foster on Bob McNair's 'inmates' comment: 'Doesn't surprise me ... he is an 80-year-old white man'

Arian Foster said he wasn’t surprised by Bob McNair’s “inmates” comment because that’s how owners “view the players anyway.” (AP)
Arian Foster said he wasn’t surprised by Bob McNair’s “inmates” comment because that’s how owners “view the players anyway.” (AP)

Former Houston Texans running back Arian Foster has released a rap album.

The four-time Pro Bowler recently spoke with USA Today about his new career and broached on social issues the NFL is struggling with, including divisive comments made by his former employer and Texans owner Bob McNair.

In October, ESPN quoted McNair as saying “We can’t have the inmates running the prison” during a meeting between players and owners at the height of the Colin Kaepernick kneeling controversy. McNair made the statement while speaking against players kneeling and drew immediate criticism for his words. 

Arian Foster: Owners view players as inmates

Foster, who played for McNair’s Texans from 2009-15, told USA Today he wasn’t surprised by McNair’s comments.

“You hear the rumblings, so … that was my first thought – that it didn’t surprise me he thought like that. Knowing my experience of being an NFL player, it is of my understanding that that’s how they view the players anyway. 

Foster invited McNair in April to join him on his podcast “Now What” on Twitter.


That conversation apparently has not happened. McNair has not appeared on Foster’s podcast.

Foster not surprised by comment from ’80-year-old white man’

Foster took a pragmatic approach to digesting McNair’s words when talking with USA Today.

I absolutely take who (McNair) is and where he comes from into consideration. He is an 80-year-old white man. When he was younger the prevailing thought was that there are two races that don’t really belong together. He could have been brought up to where he was raised the exact opposite and I am totally open to that. I come to the conclusion that it doesn’t bother and it just doesn’t surprise me if that is how he thinks and I am not going to lose any sleep over how Bob McNair views the players.

Foster doesn’t believe Kaepernick’s job troubles are strictly race-based

Foster told USA Today that he doesn’t believe the fact that Kaepernick doesn’t have a job is based on race, but rather a fear from owners of dealing with a media circus.

Kaepernick hasn’t had an NFL job since 2016 despite demonstrating an ability to play quarterback at an NFL level. Kapernick has filed a collusion grievance against the league, believing teams have coordinated to keep him unemployed. McNair was deposed in March as part of the grievance.

“I think that’s more so to do with the media storm that surrounds Colin Kaepernick if he signs with a team and teams don’t want to deal with that. I think it is dishonest that (the owners) won’t admit that, absolutely.”

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