Denver Broncos head coach Vic Fangio apologized Wednesday for his comments about racism and discrimination in the NFL. On Tuesday, Fangio, 61, said, “I don’t see racism at all in the NFL. I don’t see discrimination in the NFL.”
Many people in and around the league, including Tony Dungy, didn't agree. Tiki Barber, meanwhile, shared his perspective on this topic on CBS Sports Radio.
“Inside the locker room – and I think this is what Vic is talking about – inside the locker room, that type of situation, a racist environment, it just doesn’t exist,” Barber said on Tiki & Tierney. “In my 10 years of playing for the New York Giants, and obviously many more years before that – I grew up in Roanoke, Virginia, where it was me and my brother and a couple other black teammates; the rest of them were white. I never felt that. I think teams tend to find a way around it.”
While racism may not exist in the locker room, however, it does rear its ugly head in other areas.
“The full grasp of what he’s saying is dead wrong,” Barber said. “We know that there are prejudices. I won’t say it’s racism, but there are prejudices against African Americans in the National Football League. You see it every single year when we talk about the hiring of minority coaches, or the lack thereof; the inequity that’s given to coaches of color who have bad seasons or a bad season and how quickly they’re pulled off the stage. That’s not necessarily the same for their white counterparts.
“So there are elements of prejudice in the NFL,” Barber continued. “But I think what Vic is saying is in his locker room there’s not. He’s probably right about that.”
Brandon Tierney agreed.
“The problem with Vic here is he didn’t finish his thought,” Tierney said. “He didn’t provide proper context. If he’s guilty of anything, he’s guilty of that – not finishing an incredibly important thought. You have to do that.”