Tampa Bay Buccaneers cornerback Carlton Davis has apologized for using an anti-Asian slur on Sunday in a tweet that has since been deleted, saying he was not aware of the word’s “darker, negative connotation”.

Davis said it was not his intention to offend and the term had a different meaning in South Florida.

“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,” Davis tweeted.

“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.”

In the last year, there has been increased reports of anti-Asian hate crimes in the United States.

“I’ll retire that word from my vocabulary giving the hard times our Asian family are enduring,” Davis added.

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