NFL Hall of Famer Emmitt Smith, the longtime Dallas Cowboys star and the NFL’s all-time leading rusher, said if he were still playing, he would kneel during the national anthem to protest racial injustice.

Smith talked about defending the Cowboys' star at the 50-yard line at Texas Stadium after then-49ers wide receiver Terrell Owens celebrated on it after scoring a touchdown.

“If I can defend the star, I can take a stand for social justice,” Smith said to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. “I have been a victim of it. It’s not like I am talking because something happened to George Floyd. Something happened to me more than one time; a couple of times it happened right here in Dallas. I’m talking from experience, not something I read in a book and saw on CNN.”

Owens scored a touchdown in a 2000 game against the Cowboys and ran to midfield and stood over the Cowboys' star. The move upset Cowboys players, so after Smith scored a touchdown, he ran to the star and slammed the ball down while staring at the 49ers bench.

Giannis Antetoukounmpo earns MVP after a dominant regular season

In sports, sometimes the most recent outcomes consume our mind and block out all the things that led up to that. It’s called recency bias.

When the NBA announces regular season awards in the playoffs, this happens on a yearly basis. Giannis Antetokounmpo was named the NBA’s MVP for the second consecutive season.

Antetokounmpo also won Defensive Player of the Year, so he joined a short list of players to win both awards in the same season.

A lot of the reaction to Antetokounmpo winning MVP is centered around the Bucks' playoff shortcomings, but the MVP is a regular-season award. The voting on these awards was done solely based on what players did before entering the Disney bubble.

Antetokounmpo’s numbers this year were better than those during his first MVP campaign. His points went from 27.7 to 29.5 and rebounds from 12.5 to 13.6. This was done while his minutes dropped from 32.8 to 30.4 per game.

LeBron James finished second in the MVP voting and if the award was a combination of regular season and playoff success, he’d be at the top.

But if anyone understands how MVP voting works, it’s James. He won back-to-back MVPs in 2009 and 2010, but his playoff success didn’t match those regular seasons. Just like Antetokounmpo, James lost in the Eastern Conference finals after his first MVP, and then in the Eastern Conference semifinals after the second.

Joe Burrow is running for his life in Cincinnati

Joe Burrow has been told that he looks like Macaulay Calkin, who played Kevin in the first three Home Alone movies. Like Kevin in those movies, Burrow was often running for his life.

The rookie Cincinnati Bengals quarterback completed 37 of 61 passes for 316 yards. He was sacked three times and pressured on 21 of his throws. That means Burrow had someone in his face on nearly a third of his dropbacks.

Burrow has received praise from players and coaches in the NFL for his talent. Through two games, he’s at least given the Bengals a chance, which is something that was a rarity last season. Even LeBron James gave his thoughts on Burrow.

The Bengals are in danger of creating an Andrew Luck-type situation with their quarterback. If Burrow is to truly become special, he’ll need to be protected better.

Luck was one of the NFL’s best quarterbacks, but the Colts' reluctance to improve the offensive line resulted in early retirement due to all of the injuries he sustained. Now the Colts have one of the best offensive lines in the NFL, but Luck is gone.

Hopefully for the Bengals' sake, the offensive line gets fixed soon. The Eagles are their next opponent, and they’ll face the fearsome defenses in Baltimore and Pittsburgh twice a year.

Things aren’t getting any easier.