49ers safety explains decision to leave Players Coalition

SANTA CLARA 49ers safety Eric Reid ended his already fragile relationship with The Players Coalition after he received a text message from Philadelphia Eagles defensive back Malcolm Jenkins one of the organizations leaders asking if he and other players would be comfortable ending their protests during the national anthem if the NFL made a reported $100 million donation to the group.

At no point did we ever communicate that an agreement with the NFL would end the protests, Reid said Wednesday afternoon. For (Jenkins) to come to that point, it was the last straw.

Reid had grown increasingly frustrated with the coalition over what he believed was a lack of communication between the groups leaders Jenkins and former 49ers receiver Anquan Boldin and its fellow members.

I just havent been satisfied with the structure of the coalition or with the communication that Malcolm has been having with the NFL on his own, speaking on behalf of the protesting players when he doesnt protest, Reid said.

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Weve communicated these concerns to him numerous times, have had numerous phone calls about it. Our concerns havent been reflected in how the organization has been run. I feel like l needed to make a departure from it.

Reid believes the leaders of coalition have not transparent in their negotiations with the executives from the NFL, which proposed the donation for social justice reform.

ESPN reported Wednesday that the NFLs multi-layered proposal would see the league donate the money to help address social justice issues, both at the national and local level. Reid, though, was unhappy that more players were not involved in the negotiations.

I think its important to emphasize that it is a proposal. just something that (Commissioner) Roger Goodell has communicated with us, Reid said. It hasnt been brought to ownership yet. So its not real.

The coalition was a group of approximately 40 players, but both Reid and Miami Dolphins safety Michael Thomas each wrote Wednesday morning on Twitter that they were terminating their involvement.

With much thought and consideration, Ive decided to officially withdraw my involvement in The Players Coalition founded by Malcolm Jenkins and Anquan Boldin.

The Players Coalition was supposed to be formed as a group that represents NFL Athletes who have been silently protesting social injustices and racism. However, Malcolm and Anquan can no longer speak on our behalf as we dont believe the coalitions beliefs are in our best interests as a whole.

We will continue to have dialogue with the league to find equitable solutions but without Malcolm and Anquan as our representatives.

Former 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick had been a member of the coalition, but Reid said Kaepernick was kicked out of the organization after players met with NFL executives in October.

Reid said hes had some preliminary discussions about starting another non-profit organization to continue to raise awareness of systemic oppression and racial injustice.

I give (credit) to the NFL for wanting the step up and help us in regards to systemic oppression, Reid said. I question their intent behind it. Personally I think they just want the protests to end because its affecting their bottom line, thats my take.