Raiders draw backlash for 'I can breathe' tweet
Ethan Miller / Getty Images Sport / Getty

The Las Vegas Raiders received plenty of backlash on social media for a tweet sent Tuesday after a Minneapolis jury convicted police officer Derek Chauvin of murdering George Floyd.

Floyd said "I can't breathe" more than 20 times as Chauvin pressed his knee on Floyd's neck last May.

The tweet was pinned and remained published for more than an hour despite its negative reception online.

Raiders owner Mark Davis took ownership of the tweet.

"That's my tweet. That was me," he said to Ed Graney of the Las Vegas Review-Journal. "I don't want anyone in the organization taking heat. I take full responsibility for that."

Davis told The Athletic's Tashan Reed the phrasing of the tweet was derived from a portion of a statement made by Floyd's brother, Philonise, after the conviction when he said, "Today, we are able to breathe again."

"If I offended the family, then I'm deeply, deeply disappointed," Davis said.

It was brought to Davis' attention that supporters of the NYPD wore "I can breathe" shirts after the 2014 death of Eric Garner. During his arrest, Garner's final words were "I can't breathe" as he was placed in a chokehold by an officer.

"Let me say this right off the bat: I was not aware of that," Davis told Reed. "Absolutely not. I had no idea of that. That's a situation that I was not aware of. I can see where there could be some negativity toward what I said based on that."

Yet the longtime owner maintained that the tweet will not be deleted.

"I will not delete it. I could un-pin it and let it run its course. It's already out there," he said. "I rarely, rarely post stuff, but I'm not into erasing something. It's not an apology. I'm not embarrassed by what I said, but I did learn something now."

Raiders draw backlash for 'I can breathe' tweet
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