(KMOV) – A former St. Louis Rams practice squad player caught heat on social media after posting a Tweet that could be interpreted as slighting the military.
The incident started after someone named Morgan Reed – under the Twitter handle @_Morganism_ - tweeted “Hard to believe that a player in a helmet defendin’ a football makes more money than a soldier in a helmet defendin’ his country.”
Offensive tacke Ty Nsekhe (@TY_Nsekhe), who was on the Rams practice squad in 2012, then responded, “It doesn’t take much skill to kill someone.”
That’s when the criticism started rolling through.
“The epitome of ignorance,” tweeted actor Daniel Bostic.
“The reason you have the freedom & capitalist system that allows you to make $ is directly because of their skill & sacrifice!” wrote musician Chris Loesch, who later demanded an apology.
Nsekhe, who was released by the Rams on Aug. 31, deleted the original tweet and offered an apology.
“I recognize the sacrifices these members make so that all American’s can enjoy the freedoms our soldiers have afforded us,” he tweeted. “In no way were my comments meant to demean the members of our armed forces.”
On Tuesday, the Rams released a statement saying while they usually do not comment on issues regarding former players, they felt the need to address what they called "reprehensible comments toward our military."
Here is the team's statement in its entirety:
The opinions Nsekhe shared via social media are his own and are completely contradictory to the values of our organization and the priority we place on military and veteran appreciation.
The St. Louis Rams are grateful for the sacrifices our military and their families make in order to defend our freedom and protect our great nation. The Rams have a longstanding commitment to our military and veterans and that commitment has only been strengthened under Head Coach Jeff Fisher, a passionate supporter of the military and everything that they represent. We find it deplorable that anyone would express any feelings other than extreme gratitude for the service that our country’s military provides.
During training camp each of the past two seasons, the Rams have taken the entire team to Scott Air Force Base to practice against airmen and airwomen and personally thank them for their selfless dedication to our country.
During each home game, the Rams partner with the Wounded Warrior Project to honor a Warrior on the field and allow our fans to join us in paying tribute to them by publicly thanking them for their service.
Each season, the Rams host Military Appreciation Day at the Edward Jones Dome. Through an ongoing partnership with the USO and Boeing, local military personnel are given free admission to the Edward Jones Dome and several servicemen and women are recognized throughout the game. This year’s Military Appreciation Day is Sunday, November 3 against the Tennessee Titans.
Additionally, around Veterans Day each year, the team hosts a private practice for active military members and veterans. After practice, the players and coaches meet with them to thank them for their commitment.
Prior to his tenure in St. Louis, Fisher spent his Fourth of July weekend in Iraq where he visited several military bases and personally showed his gratitude for their service. In May 2011, Fisher was part of a team that climbed more than 19,000 feet to reach the summit of Mt. Kilimanjaro, the highest mountain in Africa, to generate awareness for Wounded Warrior Project and the organization’s mission to honor and empower wounded warriors. Fisher also donates a portion of the proceeds raised at his annual Jeff Fisher and Friends Celebrity Softball Game to Wounded Warrior Project.