In the aftermath of the Uvalde, Texas, school shooting, Tampa Bay Buccaneers linebacker and Texas native Grant Stuard couldn’t remain silent.
A gunman shot and killed 19 children and two teachers at Robb Elementary School on May 24. It was the most lives lost in an elementary school shooting since 2012.
Stuard, who grew up in Conroe, shared his thoughts on Instagram and invited dialogue from others.
“I am not saying I know the perfect solution [outside of national repentance and submission to God], but there has to be something we can do to stop this from happening,” Stuard wrote.
He also highlighted the stats — “288 school shootings in the United States since 2009” versus just five between three other countries. After Stuard posed the question of a solution to gun violence in schools in his IG story, he received a flood of responses.
“I have never gotten this many responses! I will share some of the different types of solutions people have offered,” Stuard wrote.
The final pick in the 2021 NFL Draft known as “Mr. Irrelevant”, Stuard made the Bucs roster last season and tallied 15 tackles and a forced fumble in 17 games played, mostly on special teams. Stuard led Bucs special teams players in tackles with 11.
“Everybody has seen Grant, he is a warrior on special teams, probably one of the best in the league last year,” Bucs linebackers coach Larry Foote said via Buccaneers.com.
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Bucs Rookie: ‘We Gotta Be Better’
Besides Stuard, Bucs rookie running back Rachaad White called for action, writing “this is so sad man we gotta be better this is heartbreaking” on social media with a video clip. White also expressed condolences for the families of the victims.
White, a third-round pick by the Bucs this year, hopes to compete for touches in the backfield this season. He tallied 1,420 yards and 20 touchdowns in two seasons at Arizona State.
In the wake of the shooting, White also retweeted Denver Broncos quarterback Russell Wilson’s message.
“We need to pray,” Wilson wrote. “Pray for healing. Pray for change. Pray for love.”
Wilson was a potential trade target for the Bucs early in the offseason amid quarterback Tom Brady’s 41-day retirement. The Seattle Seahawks officially traded Wilson to the Broncos on March 16, just three days after Brady announced his return to the Bucs on March 13.
Vita Vea, Fellow Bucs Recognize Shooting Victims
Defensive lineman Vita Vea was among several Bucs players who recognized the children who died in the school shooting. Other players who shared the pictures of the victims included linebacker Shaquil Barrett and wide receiver Breshad Perriman.
Bucs offensive lineman Donovan Smith called prayer for the victims and people of Uvalde via social media.
Support for Uvalde Continues from Around the NFL
Donations from around the league have poured in for families of the shooting victims in the past week.