Cooper excused from Eagles to seek counseling

Cooper excused from Eagles to seek counseling

August 2, 2013, 12:30 pm
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Riley Cooper was fined an undisclosed amount by the Eagles, and will now be excused from the team to seek counseling. (AP)

Wide receiver Riley Cooper has left the Eagles indefinitely to seek counseling for his racist slur against a security guard in June at a Kenny Chesney concert.

In a statement released by the team, the Eagles gave no timetable for when the fourth-year wideout would return and emphasized Cooper’s need for sensitivity training.

"As we have said, Riley Cooper will be seeking counseling and we have excused him from all team activities,” the statement said. “This is all new territory and we are going to evaluate this timetable every step of the way.

“He will meet with professionals provided by the Eagles during this period of time to better help him understand how his words have hurt so many, including his teammates."

Several of Cooper’s teammates have spoken out in support of Cooper, whose racial slur became a national storyline after a video of the incident went viral on Wednesday, but some teammates have also questioned whether the former Florida receiver’s true colors were revealed in the video.

Cooper has apologized to the team and issued a public apology and said that he isn’t the type of person the video portrays.

In a statement by Cooper released by the team, the 2010 fifth-round pick said the “last few days have been incredibly difficult for me” and called his actions “inexcusable.”

“The more I think about what I did, the more disgusted I get,” he said in the statement. “I keep trying to figure out how I could have said something so repulsive, and what I can do to make things better.

“Right now, I think it's important for me to take some time to reflect on this situation. The organization and my teammates have been extremely supportive, but I also realize that there are people who will have a tough time forgiving me for what I've done. The best thing for me, and for the team, is to step away for a period of time.

“During this time I'm going to be speaking with a variety of professionals to help me better understand how I could have done something that was so offensive, and how I can start the healing process for everyone. As long as it takes, and whatever I have to do, I'm going to try to make this right."