Eagles Excuse Riley Cooper For Counseling After Racial Slur - New York News

Eagles Excuse Riley Cooper For Counseling After Racial Slur

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PHILADELPHIA -

The fallout from the racial slur made by Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver Riley Cooper at a Kenny Chesney concert continued Friday.

The Eagles have announced that wide receiver has been excused from all team activities while he undergoes counseling.

The video of Cooper at the Chesney concert last month shows him using the "N-word" toward a security guard. The clip quickly spread across the Internet and landed Cooper in trouble with the team.

Shortly after Friday morning's announcement came statement from Cooper and the team.

"As we have said, Riley Cooper will be seeking counseling and we have excused him from all team activities," said the team's 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."

The statement attributed to Cooper reads as follows:

The last few days have been incredibly difficult for me. 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.

The 25-year-old University of Florida product practiced with the Eagles on Thursday during a tense day on the job, saying that he can't eat or sleep in the aftermath of his racist outburst controversy.

At practice, running back LeSean McCoy said he would have a hard time respecting someone who would make a comment like that.

Community leaders have also been weighing in. District Attorney Seth Williams says the Eagles asked him to put together a list of charities and community groups they could donate money to from Cooper's fine.

The video was first released by CrossingBroad.com, and the website's Kyle Scott joined "Good Day Philadelphia" Friday morning to discuss the clip and how it came about.

Head Coach Chip Kelly reiterated later in the day that the decision to excuse Cooper from football activities was not a football decision. His job is not in jeopardy here with the Eagles.

So, practice went on Friday as scheduled. Now, a week away from the preseason opener and his first year, Kelly explained his feelings toward Cooper and why the organization is not cutting him as of right now.

"We still care about Riley," Kelly said. "I care about Riley. Guys on this team care about Riley. Our coaches care about Riley. Mr. Lurie cares about Riley. Howie cares about Riley. He was wrong in what he did, but that doesn't mean we're going to kick him to the street."

The Eagles are trying to deal with the situation as they see best. But do the players agree?

The show went on at practice Friday, but some of the players say Cooper still needs to address some issues with the team.

When Cooper actually spoke Thursday, it was in the bubble, and some players couldn't even hear what he said. At least one said there's still an elephant in the room, and Kelly knows this isn't going to go away overnight.

"I think our players are in the process of kind of going through the, you know, this situation itself, " Kelly said. "So we had a very productive meeting today in terms of talking and guys giving input on it. But, there's been no question ever asked of anybody at this point in time if whether people are accepting of him coming back or not coming back."

"We're moving forward. You know, we're not talking about it anymore. We understand that the most important for thing for us right now is to focus on football," quarterback Michael Vick.

When DeSean Jackson was asked if he would be willing to play with Cooper again, he had an interesting response: "It's my job. I got to work."

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