Fighting against systematic racism and police brutality has cost Eric Reid his career. The former safety for San Francisco 49er's has yet to be signed to a league after following the lead of Colin Kaepernick, who took a knee during the National Anthem.
According to the New York Post, Reid's Monday meeting with the Cincinnati Bengals went south after they asked him about his stance on protesting.
The team's owner, Mike Brown, said he plans to prohibit kneeling and other forms of protest during games. A move which could be the first in NFL history according to Pro Football Talk.
Bengals coach Marvin Lewis said the team is solely focused on football and not politics.
"We are about playing football,” Lewis said. “[Players who] have other agendas, this is not the place to be. On Sunday for us and throughout the week in the building, it’s about football. That’s how I’ve approached it."
Lewis stated "whatever happens from the league standpoint we will go along with, but that is what our guys know. And they handle that for me. I don’t have to have a voice. They understand what I am about, anything beyond that gets in the way of us doing what we want to do and that’s winning football games.”
Reid states he didn't plan to protest this upcoming season, but when asked if he could commit to that stance 100 percent, he declined. As the meeting went on, Lewis asked Reid again if he wanted to "clarify" his stance on kneeling. Reid said no.
There is no reason Reid should not be signed to a team. His performance has been top notch. His fellow athletes have spoken out on his behalf. Richard Sherman advised Reid to take legal action; Torrey Smith said Reid is "being locked down."
When Reid took a knee, he understood the consequences. “I would say I understand that’s a possibility,” he said in an interview last year.
"And I’m completely fine with it. The things that I’ve done, I stand by, and I’ve done that for my own personal beliefs. Like I said, I’m fine with whatever outcome happens because of that."