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Eric Reid, Carolina Panthers, Kaepernick

Panthers’ Eric Reid Calls Malcolm Jenkins ‘Sellout’ in NFL Protest

Carolina Panthers safety Eric Reid confronted Eagles safety Malcolm Jenkins during the coin toss on Sunday’s game in Philadelphia. The heated exchange almost came to blows as tensions were high over kneeling during the national anthem.

Reid, a former teammate of Colin Kaepernick, began kneeling with the former quarterback during their 2016 season with the San Francisco 49ers. The controversy surrounding the protest led to both players going unsigned. While Kaepernick is still without a team, Reid was signed by the Panthers in September after six months of free agency.

Reid continues to kneel during the Star-Spangled Banner during Panther games. He is upset with Jenkins, who no longer holds up his fist in protest, believing that the Eagles player is a “sellout” and co-opted Kaepernick’s mission for his own self-gain.

Kaepernick showed support to Reid in a tweet following the confrontation. He wrote, “Enough said!!! @E_Reid35 #ImWith Reid.”

Jenkins is the leader of the Players Coalition, which signed an agreement with the NFL in November 2017. The league will work with the group and contribute nearly $90 million to causes players’ back in their communities.

According to The New York Times, Reid called Jenkins out for being opportunistic after the Panthers victory. “We believe a lot of players should have stepped up for Colin. I believe Malcolm capitalized on the situation. He co-opted the movement that was started by Colin to get his organization funded. It’s cowardly. He sold us out.”

Jenkins denied having any issue with Reid and responded to his criticism, saying, “I’m not going to get up here and say anything negative about that man. I respect him. I’m glad he has a job. I’m glad he’s back in the league. I’ll leave it at that.”

Kaepernick and Reid filed a collusion grievance against the NFL in May.

Christina Santi is a news and culture writer for EBONY.com. Born and raised in the Bronx, New York, she considers herself a well-read, not so traditional feminist with a heavy interest in music, fashion and pop culture. Christina currently lives in New York City, where she refers to her Cuban & Jamaican descent often while writing about her experiences as a first-generation Afro-Latinx in America. She also devotes time writing personalized reading material for her tutees and turning ideas into words for streetwear brand, PUER By Noel Bronson.