Fresh off the New England Patriots’ Super Bowl win, tight end Martellus Bennett said he won’t go visit the White House and celebrate with his teammates.
Bennett spoke to reporters after the Patriots defeated the Atlanta Falcons 34-28 Sunday, Feb. 5, and said his thoughts on skipping the tradition shouldn’t be surprising.
“I’m just trying to enjoy this right now,” he said of the Patriots’ comeback victory after a 25 point deficit. “It is what it is. People know how I feel about it. Just follow me on Twitter.”
The athlete seemed to refer to his tweet from Jan. 30, where he spoke up about the division in the country since Donald Trump became president.
America was built on inclusiveness not exclusiveness.
— Martellus Bennett (@MartysaurusRex) January 30, 2017
When asked if he was worried about upsetting team owner Robert Kraft for not making it to the White House, Bennett was unfazed.
“I’m not really worried about that,” he said with a laugh. “I’m not worried about it at all. It’s still my belief, I think they believe in … whatever I wanna do, I think they believe in that, so I ain’t really worried about that.”
Bennett answered that same question ahead of the championship Tuesday, Jan. 31.
“I don’t know. I’ve got to win the Super Bowl first, but most likely, no,” he said at the time. “I don’t support the guy that’s in the house.”
He explained he did not fear jeopardizing his brand by sticking by his principles like some other players do, according to CBS News.
“So many people are looking for encouragement, for examples, for a chance to promote change,” Bennet said. “But for a lot of guys, it comes down to the dollar — what this brand or what this company may say or how I’m going to look if I speak out.
“I think the biggest thing is stepping out on that plank because they feel like they will get crucified if they do speak up on different topics.”