(USA Today Sports Images)
The way Maurkice, a center for the Pittsburgh Steelers, and his brother Mike, who also played with Hernandez at the University of Florida and is currently a center for the Miami Dolphins, showed that support raised some criticism.
The Pounceys each wore "Free Hernandez" hats to a Miami nightclub as they celebrated their birthdays. Hernandez, the former New England Patriots tight end, has been charged with first-degree murder and is being held without bail.
There were reports that the Steelers and Dolphins would talk to the players about wearing those hats. On Monday morning, Maurkice Pouncey offered a public apology on Twitter:
"I fully recognize the seriousness of the situation involving my former teammate, and I regret that my actions appear to make light of that serious situation. I apologize to anyone who was offended by my actions," Pouncey wrote on TwitLonger.
The public backlash to the Pouncey brothers wearing those hats might be one reason so few of Hernandez's former teammates and coaches have said anything publicly about his situation.
- American Football
- Maurkice Pouncey
- Aaron Hernandez
- Pittsburgh Steelers
- Miami Dolphins