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Eric Reid, NFL free agent, says he’ll no longer kneel for national anthem

March 23, 2018 GMT

Eric Reid, the former San Francisco 49ers safety currently unattached to a team,said he will not kneel for the national anthem in the 2018 season.

The 49ers did not re-sign Reid, once a starter, when his contract expired this offseason and he is still a free agent.He was at Stanford University on Wednesday to watch his younger brother, Justin, perform at his pro day.

“We understand you have to change with the times,” Reid said.

Reid was the first player to join former teammate Colin Kaepernick in kneeling during the playing of the anthem before games as a means of silent protest against police brutality. Kaepernick did not play in 2017, even after reports of a similar statement this time last year that he would no longer kneel if signed.

Last week, Reid may have let on that he felt he was the subject of a blackball or lowball effort from the league when he tweeted, “The notion that I can be a great signing for your team for cheap... because I’ve protested systemic oppression is ludicrous.”

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Reid told reporters at Stanford that he won’t stop participating in social justice causes.

“I’m just going to consider different ways to be active, different ways to bring awareness to the issues of this country and improve on the issues happening in this country,” he said. “I don’t think it will be in the form of protesting during the anthem. I say ‘during’ because it’s crazy that the narrative changed to we were protesting the anthem and that wasn’t the case. I think we’re going to take a different approach to how we’re going to be active.”