While hosting the ESPY Awards on Saturday, actor Anthony Mackie spoke up for Sha'Carri Richardson and Naomi Osaka, two star athletes who have been facing backlash in their respective sports.

Advocating for Richardson who was suspended from the Olympics after a positive marijuana test, Mackie said weed should be considered a "de-hancing drug."

"USA Track & Field: How you mess it up, dog?" the actor said. "How do you justify banning Sha'Carri Richardson for smoking weed? Weed is a de-hancing drug – it doesn't make you do anything, but want to watch another episode of Bob's Burgers. You never saw Snoop Dogg run anywhere! I don't know how you justify not letting her run."

The 42-year-old actor was just as baffled by the controversy surrounding Osaka, who faced criticism in May after announcing her decision to stop taking part in press conferences. 

"I've often felt that people have no regard for athletes' mental health and this rings true whenever I see a press conference or partake in one," the tennis star said, according to Insider. "We're often sat there and asked questions that we've been asked multiple times before or asked questions that bring doubt into our minds and I'm just not going to subject myself to people that doubt me."

Mackie said he doesn't understand why the athlete is being punished for prioritizing her mental health.

"That's crazy. I'm no tennis exec, I don't know, but if my sport had one of the most popular and marketable athletes on the planet, you know what I would do? I would probably make sure she felt comfortable and respected," he said. "But hey, what do I know, right? I'm just Captain America."

Osaka accepted the ESPY for Best Athlete in Women's Sports on Saturday. The 23-year-old is set to represent Team Japan at the Tokyo Olympics.

"I have never competed in an Olympic Games before, but I can say, as an athlete, I'm excited to be competing in the most prestigious athletic event in the world," she told Insider. "Like most competitors, I've been waiting for this opportunity my entire life, and the fact that they are being held in my birthplace of Japan, I just feel like I can't stop smiling about it."