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ESPN reporter Jenna Laine had to apologize after nagging Buccaneers running back Giovani Bernard in the locker room Sunday regarding his role in a botched fake punt against the Cincinnati Bengals.
Laine previously made headlines for trying to school African-American Bucs head coach Todd Bowles on the significance of diversity, only to get shut down with an insightful response by Bowles.
Sadly, Jenna’s apology for her aggressive exchange with Bernard did not sit well with her critics — namely with Bucs players.
‘Stay In Your Laine’
During an interview session Wednesday, Buccaneers cornerback Carlton Davis ignored a question asked by Laine, and instead highlighted her apparent lack of decency toward Bernard in the exchange Sunday.
OutKick reached out for comment from Laine regarding the interaction with Davis, with no response made available.
Reactions to the video of Laine and Buccaneers reporters pushing up on Bernard called out their blatant apathy to the player’s response as he sincerely asked to be dismissed to see his family.
Once Bernard started pushing back, asking why they never nudged him for questions until Week 15’s play, Laine and the reporters gave half-baked excuses. Bernard eventually did his part: staying back to answer the reporters and taking responsibility for the botched play.
Did Jenna Laine Go Too Far?
Ex-Colts punter Pat McAfee, reacting to the Bernard video, pointed out the tone of entitlement Laine and the reporters employed to coerce an answer out of Bernard, completely lacking professionalism even as members of the media.
One would think that with Jenna’s pedigree, she’d at least read the locker room in a moment like this.
After days of backlash regarding her conduct in the locker room, Laine responded to the exchange with Bernard: seemingly apologizing for the restless questioning while defending her actions as a “reporter.”
“Didn’t want to post something on here until 1) I apologized to Giovani Bernard first, personally telling him I am SORRY, which I did,” Jenna’s apology read in part, “2) Until I fully understood the missteps I took in postgame Sunday, as I didn’t want this to be some hollow apology lacking sincerity. Obviously, I afforded myself a period of grace that Giovani didn’t get to have when asking him to talk postgame.
“He’s a better person than me. For many reasons.”
True that. (Your words, Jenna.)