Tampa Bay Buccaneers CB Carlton Davis tweets anti-Asian slur, apologizes

TAMPA, Fla. -- Tampa Bay Buccaneers cornerback Carlton Davis sent a tweet containing an anti-Asian slur Sunday night, and he has since apologized, saying he did not realize the term's deeply hurtful meaning.

"Gotta stop letting g---- in Miami," Davis wrote in the since-deleted tweet.

Davis, 24, apologized in subsequent tweets for using the slur and said he thought the term meant "lame."

"I would never offend any group of people," Davis wrote in a tweet accompanied by an image from an undisclosed slang dictionary entry. "You reporters can look for another story to blow up. The term was directed towards a producer claiming he 'ran Miami' With that being said I'll retire that word from my vocabulary giving the hard times our Asian family are enduring ❤️.

"I used a term that from where I come from has always meant 'lame' but I did not realize it has a much darker, negative connotation. I have learned a valuable lesson and want to apologize to anyone that was offended by seeing that word because we need to focus on helping each other during these tough times."

Buccaneers general manager Jason Licht addressed Davis' tweet in a statement released Monday.

"We have been in communication with Carlton regarding his social media post from Sunday evening," Licht said. "Carlton has been an active member of our Social Justice Player Board over the past two seasons and has played a key role in our organizational support for finding peaceful and productive ways to bring attention to societal issues that have plagued our country for many years. Words carry weight and it is incumbent upon all of us to have a thorough understanding of the words we choose and the effect they may have on others. We look forward to working with Carlton to find appropriate ways to learn from this experience and continue our joint efforts to put an end to all forms of social and racial injustices."

According to a report from the Center for the Study of Hate and Extremism, hate crimes against Asian Americans have risen nearly 150% in major U.S. cities over the past year, with several incidents making headlines in recent weeks.

Davis has spoken out against racism in the past and about his experiences as a Black man. He is part of the Bucs' social justice board, which met with community leaders last summer to discuss ways police can build better relationships with the Black community.