Anquan Boldin and Glover Quin were among five NFL players in Washington D.C. Tuesday to discuss race issues with members of Congress and the White House in an effort to improve the relationship between law enforcement and the communities they serve.
The issue has been brought into bigger light with the protests we've seen from NFL players across the league, started by 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick and his protest surrounding the national anthem.
"It's good to bring attention and get the conversation going and all those things," Quin said Wednesday. "But I'm more about, 'let's go talk to the people that can make something happen.'"
Boldin and Quin met with influential lawmakers, including Speaker of the House Paul Ryan, and members of the Congressional Black Caucus.
Boldin's voice is noteworthy on the topic, and not just because of his veteran status in the league. His cousin, Corey Jones, was shot and killed by a police officer in Florida last year while he was waiting for roadside assistance on the side of a highway.
"There's a big divide between law enforcement and civilians," Boldin said. "I think there's a huge distrust there. And so we just wanted to meet with some of the guys that bridge that gap, and I think there's work to be done on both sides.
"We need someone to bring us together and why not us? I think we have a platform at this point and what better way to use your platform?"
Boldin and Quin said they walked away from the one-day meetings feeling optimistic, but there's more work to be done moving forward.
Both players are fathers, and said wanting to make a difference for the future of their children's lives, was a motivating factor for getting involved in this cause.
"Unless we come together to solve this problem, things are only going to get worse," Boldin said. "I think we can all see where this country is right now and I don't think anybody thinks we're in a great place.
"We need to do better. I have two sons, who I'm raising, and I would hate for them to have to live in a world where they're being discriminated against for whatever reason."