I covered the Texans locker room, after the 38-13 loss to the Rams, like I’ve do after nearly every game, so I was there when many of the players were asked for their reaction to the fans cheering when Matt Schaub was hurt in the today’s game. I tweeted out a quote from Wade Smith about his disappointment and I have to say I was shocked at the mentions I got back. So I’m going to tell you what each of the player’s responses were that I’m aware of and give you full context of their answers. I’m completely in agreement with their thoughts. Completely.
Here’s what the players said straight off the transcript. I was there when Duane Brown was asked, here’s his response:
“It’s disgusting. I don’t want to address them first; I want to address the fans that were there until the end cheering us on into the tunnel. We appreciate you loyal fans and the fans that stick by us. For the fans that cheered when he got hurt, that’s disgusting. You can feel how you want about him as a player, but this is his livelihood and how he provides for his family. When a man goes down and he is not able to get up, you don’t know what is wrong with him at that point; that could be the last play of his career and for you to applaud at that ̶ I have no words for that. Shout out to the fans that stick by us; we really appreciate y’all.”
I was there when Wade Smith was asked as well:
“I don’t think I’ve ever been as disappointed in our fans than at that moment and in one respect you have diehard, loyal fans that after we come off the field losing 38-13 are cheering us going in to the tunnel. But on the other respect you have the majority of fans cheering when a guy that’s given so much to the city as far as wins and losses. The bottom line is wins and losses. As far as in the community, giving back to the city, as far as representing an organization the way you want a quarterback to do, for them to cheer at that moment it was extremely disappointing. That’s all I’ve got to say about that. Extremely disappointing.”
Here’s J.J. Watt’s response to the question:
“Yeah, it’s disappointing. You never ever want anybody to cheer an injury. That’s just unacceptable. I sure hope they don’t truly feel that way. That’s a pretty tough life if you’re cheering for somebody else to get injured. That’s a man with a wife and kids, that’s a man who’s given a lot of effort and a lot of work to this city. I sure hope there weren’t a lot of people cheering. I hope that was a very, very small minority.”
T.J. Yates was asked how he felt about the cheering:
“Yeah, that is disrespectful. The guy is laying there on the ground holding his ankle, and the fans are cheering. For all that guy has done for this city and this team, for the fans to be booing him when he is hurt on the ground, straight up disrespectful.”
Here’s Antonio Smith’s take:
“That disappointed me. Truly disappointing me. To think our fans that cheer for us don’t have emotions is to be a foolish man. I know that our performance affects them too. It disappointed me that they would cheer when somebody goes down hurt or they would cheer a man’s downfall.”
Andre Johnson’s response:
“No class. It’s bad when members of the other team are saying that’s messed up that they would do something like that. It just shows no class. It wasn’t all of the fans, but those are the same people when you’re out somewhere with your family and you tell them they can’t have an autograph right now, they are the same people that tell you you’re rude. It’s no class. It just shows what they’re all about. You don’t cheer about anybody being injured. I don’t care who it is. Guys lay their bodies on the line out there on that field. Some guys get injuries and it affects them their whole lives. For them to cheer about something like that, it just shows they have no class.”
Arian Foster was at the podium and gave this response:
“That is just tactless and tasteless. I was extremely heated at that. They have to go home and look at themselves in the mirror and if they were born to hurt a man, that’s fine. They can do what they do. The fans can get emotional. That is just not how I was brought up. That is not the kind of man I am. I’ve got to go home and raise a daughter, and teach her right from wrong. That is just not something you do. I don’t care how you feel about a man. You don’t kick him when he is down.”
Disgusting. Disappointing. Unacceptable. Disrespectful. Classless. Tactless. Tasteless.
I can’t believe anyone really believes the cheering was okay. If you want to say the cheering was because they were glad he wasn’t playing – that’s rich.
Cheer when the backup comes in and it’s a coaches’ decision. Not when a guy is laying down on the field. Sure it’s “just” his leg or ankle. Sure it looked like he was close to coming back in the game. So you shouldn’t feel bad for cheering when a guy really didn’t get hurt all that bad or because his career isn’t ending because of an injury, you should feel bad for clearly showed how happy you were a football player was hurt, because the outcome of a football game is so important to your happiness. Well done.
– Wex (@awexler)