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NFL stars consider sitting out until Kaepernick and Reid have jobs - report

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With free agents Colin Kaepernick and Eric Reid still unsigned, some NFL players reportedly are considering sitting out the 2018 season until the two former 49ers get NFL jobs.

This comes courtesy of Shaun King of The Intercept, who claims the “star” players considering the boycott are hoping to garner about 25 percent of the league’s players to join them.

https://twitter.com/ShaunKing/status/1000862670453657602

King’s report comes a week after the NFL changed its policy on national anthem protests. Players have the option to remain in the locker room, but all NFL personnel who come onto the field for the anthem must stand for it.

While you might think that would remove team’s concerns regarding protests by Kaepernick and Reid, as they would either be seen standing or not seen at all this season, it remains to be seen how the new policy will play out. It’s been met with resistance from players and at least one team.

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NFL teams have shown minimal interest in Reid and even less interest in Kaepernick.

Reid is a 26-year-old former first-round pick with experience at both safety and linebacker. He was ranked by Pro Football Focus as the third-best free agent safety on the market ahead of 2018 free agency. (It’s been a slow market for the position. The No. 2 safety on PFF’s list, Tyvon Branch, is also unsigned, as are the highly regarded Tre Boston and Kenny Vaccaro.)

Reid visited the Bengals in April, and the Niners also said they remained interested in re-signing him, but he remains on the market.

The last known interest on Kaepernick came courtesy of the Seattle Seahawks in April. They had scheduled a meeting with him but then postponed it, reportedly after he declined to say that he would stop kneeling during the anthem.

Do you expect to see star players sit out games until Kaepernick and Reid are signed?

One thing might be hurting Reid and Kaepernick’s chances of getting signed: Both have filed collusion grievances against the NFL, and they’re being represented by the same attorney.

Several players have been outspoken against the NFL’s new anthem policy, and they might be the “stars” to whom King is referring.

The Eagles’ Malcolm Jenkins said “everyone loses when voices get stifled” in response to the rule, while his teammate, Chris Long, said the NFL fell short on affecting change with the policy.

Their former teammate Torrey Smith, who’s now with the Panthers, challenged the wording of the policy.

https://twitter.com/TorreySmithWR/status/999385328250249217

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There is undoubtedly support among players to see Reid and Kaepernick return to the league, but we’ll have to wait and see if that will lead to walkouts this upcoming season.

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Ross Kelly has been a sportswriter since 2009.
Ross Kelly has been a sportswriter since 2009 and previously worked for ESPN, CBS and STATS Inc. A native of Louisiana, Ross now resides in Houston.
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