JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - Jacksonville Jaguars running back Leonard Fournette has been in the news for all the wrong reasons lately. He was suspended for the Colts game following a fight with Bills linebacker Shaq Lawson the week before.
At the time, Fournette said that incident was totally out of his character.
He returned to the lineup on Thursday night against the Tennessee Titans. In the fourth quarter of that game, he was caught on video by someone in the stands, yelling at a fan. The video, which includes mild foul language, was posted online by TMZ.
The audio of the video isn’t great, but Fournette can be heard telling the fan, “You're too old for that. I will beat your ass!”
After multiple Jaguars staffers lead him away from verbally challenging the fan, Fournette turns from his seat on the bench to continue yelling at the fan in the stands.
“You're too old for that, man. Chill out,” Fournette yells, before standing and gesturing toward the stands for the fan to come down. “I'm not worried about you. You wanna come down here? I'll whoop your ass.”
According to Jaguars head coach Doug Marrone, this is what led to Fournette's outburst:
"[Director of Public Relations] Tad [Dickman] actually showed it [video] to me prior to our walkthrough today and then when I was out on the field, after our walkthrough, I met with Leonard. He said there was a racial slur, so that’s what was told to me."
At this time, it doesn't appear that Fournette will be facing a suspension from the team. We will have to wait and see if the NFL has a response to the incident.
Leonard Fournette declined to speak on camera but told me it’s not the first time a fan has directed a racial slur towards him during a game. #Jaguars @wjxt4 @Sports4Jax — Brian Jackson (@WJXTBJackson) December 10, 2018
Former NFL quarterback and current News4Jax Jaguars analyst Mark Brunell said knowing about the racist remark changes things, and he understands why Fournette did what he did.
"There are things that should not be said by players and there are things that should not be said by a fan," Brunell said. "That specifically is unacceptable and Leonard responding to that -- I have no problem with that."
Jaguars defensive lineman Calais Campbell said he didn't hear any slurs on Thursday night, but he's been in that situation before.
"It's sad when you have to deal with that in the midst of a game," Campbell said. "At the same time it sucks, you have to try and stay focused on the game ahead and try to push through. You can't let words have power over you. That's how I feel personally."
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