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huangjian123  
#1 Posted : Thursday, October 11, 2018 6:37:33 AM(UTC)
huangjian123

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There was a time when Miami Dolphins receiver Kenny Stills was bothered by the backlash over his decision to kneel on the sideline during the national anthem Authentic Sam Darnold Jersey , his way of following Colin Kaepernick's lead and protesting social injustice.

He is no longer worried. If anything, his resolve got stronger.

"We're not going anywhere," Stills said.

Stills was one of two players who kneeled for the anthem in Week 1 around the NFL. Fellow Dolphins receiver Albert Wilson was the other. League-wide, only about 10 players participated in any form of protests. On Thursday, two days removed from meeting with veterans on Sept. 11 and getting lauded by U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio, Stills insisted that his pregame statements are not going away.

"It's not going to change," Stills said. "Activism isn't something you just kind of get involved in and then turn your back on it. Once your eyes are open to some of the things that are happening, you continue to work and try to grow and create change for the rest of your life. It's something I'm committed to forever."

Stills said the Dolphins, who had established a team policy during the offseason saying that players who protested on the field could be subject to a suspension of up to four games, have not tried to stop him from kneeling. The Dolphins' policy and all NFL punishments for protests were put on hold as the league and union negotiate.

Dolphins coach Adam Gase chose the captains for this year's team already, and Stills 鈥?just as he was last season 鈥?is one. It's a clear sign that Gase has no problems with Stills' stance, or his leadership capability.

"I think he's been the most productive slot receiver the last two years in the NFL," Gase said. "That's nothing new to us."

Stills met with reporters for about 10 minutes Thursday. There was one question about his two touchdown catches against Tennessee in Miami's 27-20 victory.

The rest of the session revolved almost entirely around kneeling, not catching

Stills went to Miami-area VA Hospitals on Tuesday , along with Wilson and a few other members of the Dolphins organization. Some of the patients were moved to tears, and Stills said he spoke with several veterans privately 鈥?most of them understanding where his protests are coming from and what they are about.

"This has never been against the military or the flag or the police," Stills said. "And so just for them to have the opportunity, for us to have the conversation, for them to approach me and say that, that meant a bunch."

There are some, however 鈥?most notably, President Donald Trump 鈥?who insist on describing the kneeling and other similar actions, such as Oakland's Marshawn Lynch staying seated for the anthem, as a protest of the flag.

Trump retweeted a photo on Sunday that showed Stills and Wilson kneeling as the anthem played. In a separate tweet, Trump said NFL television ratings are declining and wrote that if "the players stood proudly for our Flag and Anthem, and it is all shown on broadcast, maybe ratings could come back? Otherwise worse!"

Rubio Chicago Bears Jerseys Womens , R-Florida, took to Twitter this week to applaud Stills .

"You don't have to agree with how or why he has chosen to exercise the 1st Amendment before every game to acknowledge the hours he gives voluntarily, on his day off, to serve his fellow Americans," Rubio tweeted.

Stills said he understands the backlash is not going to stop.

"It's not about being the face or who gets the notoriety for it," Stills said. "It's just what I care about outside of work and what I spend my time doing when I'm not here working for the Dolphins."

Stills first kneeled during the anthem in 2016 and has been vocal discussing racial inequality and other issues. The player protests 鈥?started by Kaepernick, who has not played in the NFL since that season 鈥?have become a divisive topic. The debate was refueled earlier this month, when Nike made Kaepernick one of the faces of Nike's 30th anniversary "Just Do It" campaign .

Kaepernick lauded Stills and Wilson for kneeling last weekend. Stills said he would like to see more players protest.

"Obviously, we'd be encouraged to see more guys participating in the protest, but I understand that everyone makes their own decisions," Stills said. "I'll continue doing what I'm doing. It's never been about that. It's not about what other guys are doing. I understand my position and what I'm standing for, what I'm standing up for."

Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers wants to take the same path as Tom Brady, still flinging footballs and chasing championships at age 40.

He knows he might have to leave Green Bay to do that.

The 34-year-old acknowledged Thursday in an interview with The Associated Press that he may have to play for another team like Brett Favre did at the end of his Hall-of-Fame career.

Rodgers said he doesn’t think Favre ever fathomed leaving Green Bay before the Packers dealt him in 2008 to the Jets to make room for Rodgers. Favre finished his career in Minnesota.

”I think you have to be humble enough to realize if it could happen to Brett, it can happen to you,” Rodgers said.

Rodgers also said in an interview with ESPN Radio on Thursday that he was caught off-guard when the Packers chose not to retain his position coach, Alex Van Pelt, last month.

The notion that Rodgers, who has two years left on his contract, could also leave Green Bay before retirement like Favre did is sure to send shivers through Wisconsin.

Sort of like Anthony Barr did when he drove the two-time MVP into the turf in October, fracturing Rodgers’ right collarbone and ultimately extinguishing the Packers’ eight-year playoff run.

Rodgers said the injury was actually harder on his psyche than his shoulder.

”The physical pain was significant. Having a displaced fracture, it’s not easy, especially being a side sleeper. I had to sleep on my back for months. It’s tough. Any side sleeper can appreciate that,” Rodgers said. ”But mentally, it’s tougher, just kind of being there every day to be the kind of leader I want to be.”

Rodgers said he’ll be ready to resume that role when the Packers begin their offseason program.

”Yeah, it’s going really good. I feel great,” he said. ”Obviously Abry Jones Jersey , I came back to play, got banged up a little bit. But I’m doing everything I want to do, which at this time of the year is really working out and playing golf.”

And being Aaron Rodgers, celebrity QB.

He spoke to The AP on Thursday while sitting in the green room at ”The Dan Patrick Show.” He’ll host a VIP party for members of Marriott Rewards and Starwood Preferred Guests loyalty programs Friday night. Then, he’ll attend the NFL Honors on Saturday night and catch a red-eye so he can shoot a commercial Sunday ”that hopefully gets done in time for me to watch the game.”

He’s also keeping watch on the quarterback commotion shaking up the league with Alex Smith headed to Washington and Kirk Cousins headed for who knows how many millions along with Drew Brees and Jimmy Garoppolo .

Rodgers said he was especially intrigued by the Chiefs’ decision to trade away Smith, who was coming off the best season of his 13-year career.

”There’s always some things happening that make you scratch your head a little bit, that are surprising. Alex, for whatever reason, I think he has for most of his career been a very under-rated player,” Rodgers said.

Maybe that’s because the two been constantly compared to each other ever since the 49ers chose Smith over Rodgers with the first overall pick in the 2005 NFL draft and Rodgers slid all the way to No. 24 before Green Bay grabbed him.

”He gets this rap that’s unfortunately kind of a bad rap as a `game manager,”’ Rodgers said. ”He led the league in passer rating. He takes care of the football. He had another great year. He’s a phenomenal player. He’s a great leader. We’re the same age, same draft class. He still runs around all over the place, runs for a ton of yards every year.

”What they were doing on offense was because of his flexibility and ability to run the option or do read-option stuff,” Rodgers added, ”I think Washington is getting a phenomenal player, a great leader. Now you’ve got Kirk Cousins, what’s going to happen with him? You’ve got probably five guys that are going to get drafted in the first round, Jimmy Garoppolo and his situation. There’s a lot of moving pieces.”

Then, there’s Brady, the mainstay who’s seeking his sixth Super Bowl championship Sunday when Patriots play the Eagles.

”It’s ridiculous. We’ve been to one. This is his eighth in 17 years,” marveled Rodgers. ”It’s kind of standard operating procedure around there.”

Rodgers can envision himself putting off retirement as long as possible just like Brady.

”Oh, I’d like to definitely be 40 and be an NFL starter,” Rodgers said, ”and then hopefully get a few more after that if I’m still healthy, and more importantly, as passionate about it as I am today.”




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