OXNARD, Calif. — Miami Dolphins wide receiver Kenny Stills is frustrated more NFL players are not supporting quarterback Colin Kaepernick.
Stills took to Twitter this week to ask athletes why, and the lack of response only added to his exasperation.
“I wouldn’t say I was surprised,” Stills said Wednesday, after Dolphins’ practice. “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.”
Kaepernick, who like Stills, kneeled during the national anthem before games last season, has not found work this season.
Here are some of Stills’ Tweets from Tuesday:
“Why aren’t more players speaking up or protesting? Do you not believe there’s a problem? Do you not believe you can create change?”
“Are you worried about sponsors or your contract? Do you not care?”
“Why hasn’t the league ever released a statement condemning the unarmed shootings of our people? The league could’ve easily written a positive narrative about Kap and what he started. They chose to stay neutral. Why is that?”
“How can we expect the league to care about something we’re not showing we care about?”
Stills said he wants to learn more about why players aren’t speaking out.
“That’s a question that I asked and I got a lot of feedback from people,” Stills said. “I haven’t really had much time to look at it, but it’s something I will look into. And I mean I’m curious as to why. I was really hoping to reach more players. I don’t think many players wrote me back or responded. So that was really what that was for. Just hollering at the players. Seeing where their minds were at.”
Stills said he has engaged Seahawks’ defensive lineman Michael Bennett about social issues.
“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.”
Stills has thought about if he should kneel again during national anthems, as he did last season.
“It’s definitely something that I’ve thought about but I continue to think that the protest has been really divisive,” Stills said. “And I’m trying to do everything I can do to get everyone on the same page. It’s something I’ve definitely thought about. I really want to bring people together. I’m open to having conversations with people and trying to get them on the same page.
Should players use their voices more?
Obviously Stills feels the answer is yes.
“I haven’t been too shy about saying anything,” So I’ll continue to speak my mind.