NFL star Malcolm Jenkins reflects on the power of protest as new season looms

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(NBC News) – With the NFL season approaching, there is a player getting recognition for his powerful moves on and off the field.

Philadelphia Eagles safety and former Buckeye Malcolm Jenkins hasn’t taken a break since his team won the Super Bowl. He’s trying to help tackle criminal justice issues by starting conversations with law enforcement.

Jenkins has become a voice for reform and says there’s a place for activist athletes in football.

Jenkins spoke with NBC News’ Lester Holt about social issues and the NFL.

“Ultimately, I mean, these social issues you’re dealing with are serious, they’re deep, and I think most people recognize that they have to be dealt with on some level. But is all this good for football?” asked Holt.

“That’s not my concern.  I mean, we can talk about social issues and still have a great game.  We talked about domestic violence for a whole year. We had commercials, we had things on the field. Nobody had an issue with that. We talk about breast cancer for a whole month every year. We wear pink on the field. We do dedications. We have the moms out there before the game. No issues with that. When we start talkin’ about black issues, and issues of race, now all of a sudden, ‘We just want football. We don’t want all the extra stuff, we just wanna watch the game,’” responded Jenkins.

Tap here to see more of Lester Holt’s interview with Malcolm Jenkins.

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