49ers coach Chip Kelly told reporters Saturday that quarterback Colin Kaepernick’s decision not to stand for the national anthem does not affect Kaepernick’s place on the depth chart or any other football matters.
Kelly said Kaepernick, who started Friday night’s preseason game, remains in competition with Blaine Gabbert for the team’s starting quarterback job.
Kelly knew questions about Kaepernick were coming when he talked with reporters Saturday. Earlier in the day, Kaepernick told NFL Network he is “not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses Black people and people of color.”
If Kaepernick wants to continue to not stand for the anthem, Kelly won’t try to change his mind.
“It’s not my right to tell him not to do something,” Kelly said.
Kaepernick also didn’t stand for the anthem during prior preseason games, and Kelly said “he has the right to express his feelings.”