Benjamin Watson is not your ordinary NFL player.
The 34-year-old New Orleans Saints tight end has the third highest Wonderlic score ever recorded and is not afraid to speak out on controversial issues such as race and religion. He joined us on the latest episode of Bill Rhoden On Sports to discuss these hot-button issues, as well as his new book, Under Our Skin, which was released on Tuesday.
You may remember Watson’s essay on his Facebook page last year in response to the racially charged events in Ferguson, Missouri. He thoughtfully examined the issues on both sides of the conflict, and the post quickly went viral. The feedback he received influenced him to continue to speak out and ultimately pen his first book.
“The book is really an extension of that Facebook post,” Watson explains. “It’s not just talking about Ferguson, Eric Garner or Tamir Rice, but challenging all of us, whether you’re black or white. In order to solve this thing, we really all need a change of heart.”
Watson discussed with us the experiences from high school, college and the professional level that molded him into the person he is now: a man not afraid to speak out about social issues, a rare case in today’s sports world.
Watson also shared his views on the recent incidents at the University of Missouri and talked to us about his struggling Saints team that limped into their bye week at 4-6, after an embarrassing performance in Washington. Watson knows the Saints have dug themselves a considerable hole, but believes there is still time to turn the season around.
“We know that a lot of things have to be better for us to win consistently, so the hope is moving forward that we get those things together.”
Listen to the full interview with Benjamin Watson on the latest episode of Bill Rhoden On Sports.
Follow the Bill Rhoden On Sports podcast on Twitter @BROSpod.