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(Photo credit: Stephen Brashear, AP)

The NFL’s two-month old national anthem policy is on hold.

Hours after The Associated Press reported that Miami Dolphins players who protest on the field during the anthem could be suspended for up to four games under a team policy issued this week, the league and the players union issued a joint statement late Thursday night saying the two sides are talking things out.

“The NFL and NFLPA, through recent discussions, have been working on a resolution to the anthem issue. In order to allow this constructive dialogue to continue, we have come to a standstill agreement on the NFLPA’s grievance and on the NFL’s anthem policy. No new rules relating to the anthem will be issued or enforced for the next several weeks while these confidential discussions are ongoing,” the statement read. “The NFL and NFLPA reflect the great values of America, which are repeatedly demonstrated by the many players doing extraordinary work in communities across our country to promote equality, fairness and justice. Our shared focus will remain on finding a solution to the anthem issue through mutual, good faith commitments, outside of litigation.”

The issue has dominated headlines over the past two seasons, caused division and alienated some fans.

The NFL rule that was passed in May forbid players from sitting or taking a knee if they are on the field or sidelines during “The Star-Spangled Banner,” but allowed them to stay in the locker room if they wish. The policy said teams would be fined if players didn’t stand during the anthem while on the field. The league left it up to teams on how to punish players.

None of the team policies had been made public until the AP obtained a copy of Miami’s nine-page discipline document. It included a one-sentence section on “Proper Anthem Conduct” and was provided to the AP by a person familiar with the policy who insisted on anonymity because the document is not public. It classifies anthem protests under a large list of “conduct detrimental to the club,” all of which could lead to a paid or unpaid suspension, a fine or both.

The Dolphins said in a statement: “The NFL required each team to submit their rules regarding the anthem before their players reported to training camp. We will address this issue once the season starts. All options are still open.”

Miami can choose not to issue any suspension nor fine any player guilty of “conduct detrimental to the club.” Other violations under that label include drug use or possession, gambling, breaking curfew and riding motorcycles as a driver or passenger from the start of camp until the last game of the season.

Jets acting owner Christopher Johnson said shortly after the league announced its policy that he will not punish his players for any peaceful protests — and would pay any potential fines incurred by the team as a result of his players’ actions.

The new league rules were challenged this month in a grievance by the players union. The NFLPA said the NFL policy, which the league imposed without consultation with the players union, is inconsistent with the collective bargaining agreement and infringes on player rights. Now, the two sides are hoping to reach a solution without litigation.

Dolphins veteran receiver Kenny Stills took a knee with a hand on his heart during the anthem throughout last season. Defensive tackle Jordan Phillips put his arm around Stills before one game. Two other players who knelt — safety Michael Thomas and tight end Julius Thomas — are no longer with the team.

Defensive end Robert Quinn, who raised his fist during the anthem while with the Rams, is now with the Dolphins.

“Players who are on the field during the Anthem performance must stand and show respect for the flag and the Anthem,” says the 16th and final bullet point on Miami’s list of conduct considered detrimental, below disparaging teammates, coaches or officials including NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell.

The NFL started requiring players to be on the field for the anthem in 2009 — the year it signed a marketing deal with the military.

In 2016, then-49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick began protesting police brutality, social injustice and racial inequality by kneeling during the national anthem, and the demonstration spread to other players and teams.

Critics led by President Donald Trump called the players unpatriotic and even said NFL owners should fire any player who refused to stand during the anthem. Some players countered that their actions were being misconstrued and that they are seeking social change rather than protesting the anthem itself.

Trump’s criticism led more than 200 players to protest during one weekend, and some kept it up throughout the season.

The league and a coalition of players have been working in tandem to support player initiatives for a variety of social issues. The NFL is committing $90 million over the next seven years to social justice causes in a three-segment plan that involves league players.

Kaepernick didn’t play at all last season and still hasn’t been picked up by another team. He threw 16 touchdown passes and four interceptions in his final season in 2016. Safety Eric Reid, one of Kaepernick’s former teammates and another protest leader, is also out of work.

Both have filed collusion grievances against the NFL.

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14 thoughts on “NFL, NFLPA Freeze Anthem Rules Amid Backlash To Miami Policy

  1. No matter what they do, someone is going to unhappy. You simply can’t please everyone. Instead of flipping back and forth like a fish on a hook, just say what you mean, mean what you say and keep it moving. All this flip-flopping back and forth every time someone criticizes what is said, not said or not done is just getting old. Don’t people understand that when you change your stance on a subject every time someone throws a tantrum, you look weak and you lose credibility? I guess the new anthem rule will be “unfrozen” when the other side starts to complain. Damn people! Just grow a pair already.

  2. To our subject now……..Are whites superior to blacks?

    My political “correct” answer :

    1. Whites head to head with blacks (rest races excluded) dominate and win over 90% of sports at the Summer Olympics (major sports such as Tennis, Soccer, Golf etc and minor sports like long distance running for example included) and nearly 100% of the medals in the Winter Olympics. The gap between the two races in Extreme sports, Auto and Motor Sports etc is unmatched as well. All these are facts, now if you want to doubt or deny them to feel better, then go ahead.

    2. Scientifically, militarily, technologically, politically, economically and so on, whites have conquered (multiple times) the world, have colonized, have invented pretty much everything we use, have produced the greatest warriors in the battle field, the greatest generals, the greatest empires, went to the space, went to the moon, explored and conquered the oceans, the highest mountains, builds the greatest monuments and buildings, produces the greatest mathematicians, philosophers, explorers, scientists, astronauts, doctors, lawyers, actors, models, singers, music groups, painters, composers and so many more million things.
    It’s no secret that the western civilization that every subhuman from Africa wants to be part of (by having a position in white societies and a white OBESE woman as a trophy) is a creature of the white man!

    3. Looks wise, the white human is by far the most desirable and diverse worldwide, has the biggest variety in hair texture, in colour of the eyes, in colour of the hair, the most beautiful features (that black women ala Tyra Banks, Beyonce etc take nose jobs to have a “white” nose) and so on. The vast majority (95% plus) of models, beauty queens in Universal pageants, sexy symbols even in Jewish dominated fields as Hollywood and so on have been traditionally white .

    4. Fashion wise that blacks funnily claim to be imitated from white boys……….Who designed jeans? Pants? Jackets? Hats? What’s the race of giants of the field such as Dior, Chanel, Calvin Clein, Armani, Yves Saint Laurent, Valentino and 99% of them pretty much? How dare you to make such claims when your people’s fashion has been leaf covers son and all you do systematically is copying our culture, style and fashion?

    5. Inventions and contributions to society……..Do you really want me to go there now with you? A simple example, white man invented boats, trains, spaceships, sonars, planes, electricity, computers etc while the black man’s greatest invention is peanut butter…….You do the math son!

    6. Manhood, bravery, ambition etc the white man has no match there too. He has achieved what rest races don’t even dare to think and usually out of jealousy and envy say “Look what the crazy white man does” simply because they wish they could do and achieve all the white man has achieved, but they know they can’t!
    I will go one step further and I am afraid that this claim of mine will be against my ideology and the whole Jewish propaganda of porn, but check even in the porn industry, how 95% of the male performers, award winners etc are white men with great bodies and HUGE “heart” if you know what I mean………Where are all these “gifted” black men? Again even in that field, you are the slightest minority! John Holmes is considered to this day the “longest and harder” ever……..even that myth surrounding your race is ALL FALSE!

    My NON political correct answer :

    After all I said, you will probably come back either with a verbal insult, or even worse if we spoke face to face, you would try physical violence against me, with fatal result for you ending being emasculated and beat up, healing in a hospital (speaking from personal experience).

    Now if you were trying to speak back civilized and say the common nonsense I have been used to hear from people of your inferior kind such as :

    ” The white man stole this from us, we had the greatest empires named UCHO KUCHO and Zandia Keylia, the white man enslaved us and he’s the reason we are in such position today blah blah ”

    My answer would be simple as that……….Mother nature teaches us that the bigger, smarter, more capable and stronger fish eats the small, dumb, weak, pathetic one. You should know such rule, since you use the name of Darwin, who was one of the men who believed in such theory with a passion………all I am trying to say is, by crying out loud how white man did this or that to you, how he conquered your land, enslaved you and so on, all you do really is verifying the basic rule of nature

    Bottom line, the black man was conquered, enslaved and dominated from his white boss for a reason, if the black man could, he would do the same or even worse in my opinion and if you make a historical research you will find out that various African tribes tried plenty of times to conquer and enslave Ancient Greece, Italy, Spain, Malta and more.

    To close this, when I see a black man crying for what happened in the past or making questions of the kind you just made, all I see is black men with hidden anger, frustration and extreme jealousy, simply because your ancestors failed to be as dominant as our ancestors……….You can’t be all about “peace, diversity and equality” but the vast majority of your inferior kind celebrating openly with joy and pleasure the so called upcoming extinction of the white race …….That proves to me what I already know, that all your kind (and the Jews of course) truly is, is a bunch of cowards who want domination and power, but are not willing to fight and conquer it with glory just like whites usually do and will do again one day.

    Have a nice rest of the day sir!

  3. tedgravely on said:

    Misguided debate. In my opinion, the anthem doesn’t belong in sports. Tradition says you stand out of respect to the flag, not law. On most military bases only the color guard raises the flag and salute every morning. If it is so precious, get all the Soldiers around the flag pole at least once a week. Some bases never retire the colors. The colors are flying 24/7. Then members of the military play the anthem over a loud speaker every morning. If you’re out of your car or walking you turn and face the flag. Let’s not talk about the liquored up hillbillies in the sports bars. You know, the ones who love to talk about how Patriotic they are. When the anthem plays on tv, they don’t stand, nor remove their dirty ball caps. Prayer and the pledge were removed from public schools. Remove the anthem from all sporting events. I’m watching for the game, not some artist’s rendition of the anthem. Let #45 get up in the morning and have the entire White Hoise and his cabinet salute the flag everyday. Start with the Head of State and then come back to me.

  4. S.D. on said:

    Asswipe mac attack, I do have a job and know what I can and cannot do and relinquishing my right to freedom of speech is one thing that I don’t have to give up – – so go slither back under your rock……

  5. S.D. on said:

    I hope they all take a knee and then what will teams do? Suspend them all – then you have no season. I hope the players recognize that they really hold the power and have the owners kneeling for a different reason.

  6. Passing Trough!! on said:

    Critics led by President Donald Trump called the players unpatriotic
    *******
    Critics led by a racist, treasonous traitor who pissed all over AmeriKKKa on Monday during the Helsinki Summit during his boot licking praise of Putin. The NFL organization are a bunch dumb asses for agreeing with this fool. I hope the players won’t cave in to theses racist, keep and Kneeling. The black athletes are the foundation of the NFL they hold the power and they need to exercise it.

    • Alice on said:

      I am not watching either. I am totally with Kap! The NFL Owners can kick rocks as far as I am concerned. You have to hit big corporations where it hurt and that is in their pocketbooks.

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