Dallas Cowboys player Josh Brent, who is facing intoxication manslaughter charges in an accident that killed teammate linebacker Jerry Brown, was roaming the Dallas sideline during the Cowboys' game against the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday.
The move was criticized by CBS Sports and others, but the Cowboys said they are following the wishes of Stacey Jackson, mother of Jerry Brown, reports the NY Daily News.
Cowboys' coach Jason Garrett said: "What we wanted to do as an organization was just support Jerry Brown’s mom’s wish. The players were the guys who really encouraged Josh to be there with a number of phone calls: ‘you’re coming to this game.’ That’s just our guys understanding the situation and understanding Stacey Jackson’s wishes. She considers Josh a son."
Cowboys' owner Jerry Jones added: “His mother asked everyone, all of us, and she made it a big point, that she wanted us to support [Brent] and have his back. She said he’s not only a good friend, but I love him and you give your brother love. Our players wanted him on the sideline.”
Cowboy's kicker Dan Bailey made a 21-yard field goal for a 27-24 overtime win over the Steelers, which pulled the Cowboys into a three-way tie for first place in the NFC East with the Giants and Redskins.
Brown's no. 53 jersey was draped on the Cowboy's bench in memory of the fallen player.