NFL national anthem protest: Dolphins WR Kenny Stills undecided for 2017

Kenny Stills had full support from the organization when he protested last season. (Getty Images)

DAVIE–Dolphins receiver Kenny Stills believes he and his teammates have made a difference locally, but he has not decided whether he’ll continue protesting during the national anthem during the upcoming season.

Stills, safety Michael Thomas and former Dolphins Jelani Jenkins and Arian Foster knelt during the national anthem last year to express their view on racial equality in America last season. Jenkins stopped after the opener and Foster retired early in the season, while Stills and Thomas continued through the end of the year.

The idea was inspired by former 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick, who started protesting in the preseason. Kaepernick has said he will not continue doing so, but Stills is still considering his plans.

“I guess we’ll see when the time comes,” he said after Miami’s Organized Team Activities session today. “I’m doing my best to continue to work and make an impact in the community, and I feel that’s the most important part about what I’m doing right now.”

The organization backed all four players who protested, and owner Stephen Ross was their most vocal supporter. Stills said he would have taken his stance either way, but he “it was a relief” to know that Ross was on board.

Stills’ plans likely hinge on how much progress he sees on the issue between now and the Dolphins’ preseason games in August. He was very active in South Florida last year, holding a town hall and teaming up with police on a ride along program. Last year, the organization chose him as the recipient of its Nat Moore Community Service Award.

“I think here, locally, we’ve done everything we can and we’re gonna continue to do that,” Stills said. “The ride along that we did last year with law enforcement is something we’re gonna try to do again this year and it’s something we’re trying to expand on throughout the league. I just try to focus on the positive things that we’ve done here and spread the message to other guys on other teams.

“I try to do my best to do the right thing. That’s how I handle it. I’ve gotten more involved this past year. It’s something I can’t hold back on because it’s something that’s true to my heart. That’s how I handle every situation I come across.”

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