Mike Brown owns the Cincinnati Bengals, an NFL team that has, in the past decade, signed, drafted and continued to employ football players with histories of societally unacceptable behavior both on and off the field.
It seems, however, Brown — who has overseen exactly zero (0) playoff victories since assuming ownership in 1991 — draws his line at non-violent protest.
According to Pro Football Talk, former 49ers safety and free agent Eric Reid met with the Bengals on Monday, and during that visit, Brown personally conversed with Reid, who has protested police brutality and racial injustice in America by kneeling during the national anthem. Brown, according to PFT, “initiated discussion regarding the issue of kneeling” and “the conversation almost exclusively centered on the topic.”
Brown told Reid he planned to prohibit kneeling during the anthem and asked Reid for his opinion on the matter. Reid, who said last month that he is no longer planning to kneel as he pursues other options for bringing light to racial issues, “wasn’t willing to make a commitment,” PFT reports.
Related: See Reid alongside Colin Kaepernick on the 49ers:
When asked for comment on the visit, the Bengals responded to PFT with a statement: “The Club conducts many interviews with players throughout the year. The Club views these interviews as confidential and does not comment on them.”
This, from a team that has continued to play linebacker Vontaze Burfict, a cheap-shot artist suspended twice for illgal hits and who will be banned again next season for a PED violation.
This, from a team that for eight seasons employed cornerback Adam “Pacman” Jones, whose arrest record is littered with violent charges, including a January 2017 arrest that included a felony charge for harrassment with a bodily substance.
This, from a team that drafted running back Joe Mixon, a man caught on camera blind-siding a woman with a viscious punch to the head.
But yes, kneeling during the national anthem is the real problem here.