The Philadelphia Eagles said receiver Riley Cooper, who has been enveloped by controversy after saying a racial slur that was caught on video, would seek counseling.
“As we have said, Riley Cooper will be seeking counseling and we have excused him from all team activities,” the Eagles said in a statement. “This is all new territory and we are going to evaluate this timetable every step of the way. He will meet with professionals provided by the Eagles during this period of time to better help him understand how his words have hurt so many, including his teammates.”
Cooper, who has admitted alcohol played a part in the incident, is taking an indefinite leave of absence. Counseling was part of the punishment levied by the team for his actions.
“The last few days have been incredibly difficult for me,” Cooper said in a statement. “My actions were inexcusable. The more I think about what I did, the more disgusted I get. I keep trying to figure out how I could have said something so repulsive, and what I can do to make things better.
“Right now, I think it’s important for me to take some time to reflect on this situation. The organization and my teammates have been extremely supportive, but I also realize that there are people who will have a tough time forgiving me for what I’ve done. The best thing for me, and for the team, is to step away for a period of time.
“During this time I’m going to be speaking with a variety of professionals to help me better understand how I could have done something that was so offensive, and how I can start the healing process for everyone. As long as it takes, and whatever I have to do, I’m going to try to make this right.”
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