Dolphins wide receiver Kenny Stills asked the question of his fellow players. And their lack of response troubles him.
After going on a bit of a Twitter diatribe wondering why there hasn’t been more support from players for out-of-work quarterback Colin Kaepernick, Stills said he’s puzzled by the feedback — or lack thereof — he’s gotten.
“I wouldn’t say I was surprised,” Stills said, via Joe Schad of the Palm Beach Post. “Just, I feel like the league is majority African American and you would think more people would come to have one of our guys’ back. We talk about the NFL being a brotherhood and they give us this presentation every year about the NFL being a brotherhood and when something wrong is going on to one of your brothers I feel like we should be there to have his back and to speak up for him.”
Stills, like Kaepernick, kneeled during the national anthem last year but has stopped doing so this season. But he doesn’t understand why more players weren’t actively vocal. He’s discussed the topic with Seahawks defensive end Michael Bennett.
“We’ve talked through text message,” Stills said. “We’re all just trying to be here for each other. I feel like the narrative is kind of going to the wrong way sometimes. Just to have each others’ back and support each other and you know I’m really happy to see the things that he’s doing. I was kind of at a loss for words hearing what happened to him after the Mayweather fight. So just continuing to reach out to guys and letting them know we have their back. And the NFL is actually a brotherhood like we talked about.”
But since the players are effectively independent contractors, there are plenty of them who don’t want to endanger their own paychecks. And seeing Kaepernick out of work while so many less-talented quarterbacks are employed won’t do anything to embolden them.
Of course, that’s also the reason more should, because any of them who step outside the approved messaging can easily be the next one being cut out from the herd.