DAILY LINKS: NFL player protests sweep across league after President Trump’s remarks

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NFL player protests sweep league after President Donald Trump’s hostile remarks – USA Today
NFL players responded in full force Sunday after President Trump repeatedly called for swift punishment against those who chose to protest by not standing during the national anthem.

Demonstrations spread throughout the league as many players broke out of their routine by joining the protests or engaging in team-wide displays of unity. The Associated Press estimated 204 players elected to either kneel or sit during the anthem.

Emotional Chargers DE criticizes President Trump – San Diego Union-Tribune
McCain was one of more than a dozen players from the Chargers and Kansas City Chiefs who kneeled during the national anthem in StubHub Center on Sunday to draw attention to racism and social injustice and object to President Donald Trump’s comments, which the NFL considered divisive.

At a political rally Friday in Alabama, Trump challenged NFL owners to fire any player who takes a knee during the national anthem, saying owners should say: “Get that son of a bitch off the field right now. Out! He’s fired!”

McCain was measured in his initial remarks, saying he did not take a knee “to disrespect the flag, to stick a middle finger at the flag,” and that he was simply exercising his First Amendment rights. But his voice cracked with emotion when the subject turned to Trump and those objecting to NFL players standing up for what they believe in.

Response to President Trump Made Roger Goodell ‘Proud of Our League’ – Sports Illustrated
But really, think of what happened. The previous weekend, in the 16 games in the NFL, fewer than 10 players, total, either sat or raised a fist during anthems across the league. The organized protests were being replaced by meetings between a cadre of increasingly socially conscious players and league and team officials. Then the Alabama speech happened, and players—white and black—and owners and union officials and the commissioner, got angry. On Saturday, one coach whose team hadn’t done any protesting of note before this weekend said his players “felt like the president put them in a corner—and they had to do something or it’d look like the president made them back down.”

Adam Silver responds to Trump’s remarks, says he’s ‘proud’ of players for speaking out – CBS Sports
Perhaps it should have been expected, but when Steph Curry said Friday afternoon at Golden State Warriors media day that he didn’t want to go to the White House, it didn’t seem like the type of comment that would inspire an entire day’s worth of responses.

But of course it has, with President Trump disinviting him early Saturday morning on Twitter, which sparked a number of NBA players, including LeBron James and Chris Paul, to fire back with their own tweets. Eventually, the Warriors put out a statement, and now, so too has NBA commissioner Adam Silver.

Philip Rivers throws 3 INTs as Chargers fall to 0-3 in ‘Battle for L.A.’ – ESPN
According to ESPN Stats & Information data, since the NFL went to 12 playoff teams in 1990, just three teams that have started 0-3 have made the playoffs: the 1998 Buffalo Bills, the 1995 Detroit Lions and the 1992 Chargers (who started 0-4).

Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers struggled mightily in this one, throwing three interceptions on the first four possessions in the first half.

According to ESPN Stats & Information research, it was Rivers’ ninth career regular-season game with at least three interceptions, and six of them have come since the start of 2014. Rivers has the most such games in the NFL in that span.

It’s also the first time Rivers threw three interceptions in the first half.

Marty’s Minute: A Recap Of The Charger 24-10 Loss To The Kansas City Chiefs
The Chargers are off to an 0-3 start. What happened this time? A quick recap of the Chargers 24-10 loss to the Kansas City Chiefs.

Chargers, other teams reached out to free agent CB Darrelle Revis – ESPN
The Chargers were one of a handful of teams, according to league sources, that have contacted the seven-time Pro Bowler, who played for the New York Jets in 2016 before being released in the offseason.

One person close to Revis said this weekend that the cornerback is still expected to play in 2017, even though he has not visited any teams yet. Revis has been training in Florida and is still interested in a return to the NFL.

The Chargers made contact with Revis before they placed Jason Verrett on injured reserve Saturday, which made it official that they are in need of help at cornerback. Verrett decided to undergo season-ending surgery on his left knee, a source told Schefter.

Melvin Ingram & Travis Benjamin On 0-3 Start After 24-10 Loss To The Chiefs
Hear from Melvin Ingram and Travis Benjamin on the Charger 0-3 start after their 24-10 loss to the Kansas City Chiefs.

Penny scores 3 TDs, No. 22 SDSU holds off Air Force 28-24 – FOX Sports
Rashaad Penny scored three times, including a 53-yard scamper with 5:39 remaining, and No. 22 San Diego State held off Air Force 28-24 on a dreary Saturday night.

Penny, the nation’s leading rusher entering the game, struggled early in the soggy conditions. But he finally found some running room as the Aztecs (4-0, 1-0 Mountain West) began their quest to capture a third straight conference title. Penny finished with 128 yards rushing, which was 68 below his season average.

NASCAR owners say they wouldn’t tolerate national anthem protests at races – The Hill
Several NASCAR team owners said Sunday they would not condone racers protesting during the national anthem, amid protests by sports players at football and baseball games.

There were no protests reported during “The Star-Spangled Banner” at the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series in New Hampshire, according to The Associated Press.

Former NASCAR champion Richard Petty told the AP that any member of his team would be fired if they chose to protest the national anthem. Petty now owns Richard Petty Motorsports.

Report: Dwyane Wade, Bulls Reach Buyout Agreement – Sports Illustrated
Dwyane Wade and the Chicago Bulls have reached an agreement on a buyout on the final year of Wade’s contract, K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune reports.

The Cavaliers, Spurs and Heat are the front runners to land the 12-time All-Star, and the Thunder could also play a factor in his decision, Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN.com reports. Wojnarowski also reports that Wade gave back approximately $8 million of the $23.8 million he was going to make this season to reach the agreement.


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