Orchard Park, NY - After Jim Kelly blasted Bills running back LeSean McCoy for kneeling and stretching during the player of the national anthem, defensive end Jerry Hughes had harsh words for the hall of fame quarterback.
“I was very disappointed in (Jim),” Hughes said on Monday. “I was very disappointing in how he approached the whole situation. Our team came together and we united as a front and as an organization on how we were going to approach the national anthem."
Kelly said during a radio appearance on 97 Rock he “lost respect” for McCoy.
“If Jim was going to do what he did, he should have come to the team and let us know his feeling," Hughes said. "For him to carry on in this manner, I’m really confused and I’m really upset.
“If this is truly what he felt and what was on his heart, he should have came to the team and he should have approached us instead of making it a public matter and doing that on his social page. It was not cool, very unacceptable and if he has things to say to us as a team, come talk to us.”
Kyle Williams said he believes Kelly and McCoy spoken.
“The great thing about Jim is that he loves this team and he’s a part of this team," Williams said. "He’d be the first one to tell you, anything related to players or comments he’d bring to the team that need to stay with the team.
“I don’t think Jim needs to understand that, I think he knows that and I think that’s why he spoke to Shady. Them talking about it is the best thing for them and for the team.”
Williams was pressed on whether he believed if it was fair for Kelly to discuss his feelings before talking with McCoy.
“I think obviously if you look around the landscape, not just in football but around the country, there is a lot of opinions getting thrown around in a lot of different directions. As a team, a lot of times we’re able to have a dialogue and talk about those things behind closed doors. Obviously, this is one that’d be better off in a private environment," Williams said. "It didn’t, so what do they do? They get together and work past it that way.”
Sean McDermott was asked whether Kelly would still be welcomed on the Bills sideline after Monday's comments. The Bills head coach did not give a direct answer, but it seems nothing will change.
“Jim Kelly is one of the hallmarks of this organization,” McDermott said. “He is an alum of this organization, this football team. I don’t at this point see that changing.”
“Half the time I don’t even realize he’s (on the sideline) until it was pointed out yesterday the display of actions he did,” Hughes said.
“I’m not sure I understand it. We are the 2017 Buffalo Bills. We are focused on the future, we’re focused winning games. If he wants to offer words of encouragement to our team, to our quarterback to our offense, we could use all the encouragement we need to figure out how they were successful in those days.
“But we’re trying to bring a team together, we’re trying to bring a community together, we’re trying to bring a nation together and by dividing us and by dividing the team, that doesn’t work.”
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