Indianapolis Colts

Coaches' decision sidelines Bowman, Hyde in loss to Colts

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AP

Coaches' decision sidelines Bowman, Hyde in loss to Colts

INDIANAPOLIS – Linebacker NaVorro Bowman and running back Carlos Hyde did not appear pleased to be spectators for a good portion of Sunday’s game.

Bowman was used as part of a rotation at inside linebacker, in which Brock Coyle took over for him at different points of the 49ers’ 26-23 overtime loss to the Indianapolis Colts.

And Hyde said his hip felt better than it has for a couple of weeks and the reason Matt Breida was on the field for long stretches of time was a “coaches’ decision.”

Breida gained 49 yards on 10 rushing attempts and also caught three passes for 22 yards. Hyde gained just 11 yards on eight rushing attempts and caught one pass for 7 yards.

Bowman sustained a mild “stinger” in the first half, but he said he knew he was not going to play the entire game.

“Um. I don’t know, man,” Bowman said. “We had a conversation. I don’t know. They’re doing what they want to do, and . . . I don’t know. I don’t like it. Nobody likes coming out of the game, but I’m a team player.

“They told me. But it’s hard to do that in the midst of a tough game. No player likes being taken out.”

Bowman led the 49ers with 10 tackles. Ray-Ray Armstrong, who started alongside Bowman at linebacker, recorded six tackles and intercepted a pass in overtime. Coyle was credited with two tackles and a half-sack.

VP Pence leaves 49ers-Colts game after national anthem

VP Pence leaves 49ers-Colts game after national anthem

INDIANAPOLIS – Twenty-three members of the 49ers protesting social inequality apparently prompted U.S. Vice President Mike Pence to head for the exit at Lucas Oil Stadium on Sunday.

Pence tweeted on Sunday morning that he looked forward to cheering on the Indianapolis Colts and “honoring the great career” of Peyton Manning. The Colts unveiled a statue of Manning outside the stadium on Sunday. Manning was scheduled to be honored at halftime. Pence is the former governor of Indiana.

But after the playing of the national anthem, Pence reported on Twitter that he left the buiilding in a protest of his own. Within minutes, he produced a statement to explain his actions:

"I left today's Colts game because President Trump and I will not dignify any event that disrespects our soldiers, our Flag, or our National Anthem. At a time when so many Americans are inspiring our nation with their courage, resolve, and resilience, now, more than ever, we should rally around our Flag and everything that unites us. While everyone is entitled to their own opinion, I don't think it's too much to ask NFL players to respect the Flag and our National Anthem. I stand with President Trump, I stand with our soldiers, and I will always stand for our Flag and our National Anthem."

No members of the Colts were seen protesting during the national anthem.

The 49ers did not have a formal team-wide protest on Sunday, but more than 20 players – active and inactive – took a knee during the playing of the Star-Spangled Banner as a peaceful protest against social injustices in the United States.

Eric Reid and Colin Kaepernick last year made it clear their intent in kneeling the national anthem was not to disrespect the flag, the national anthem or the miltary. Recently, Reid explained why he chose to kneel during the national anthem.

“Our goal is to make people uncomfortable about the issues,” Reid told NBC Sports Bay Area. “But the anthem is just a vehicle to get us to have those conversations. It’s the platform we have. It’s the only time we have to get the eyeballs on us to do that. If we just did locker-room talks afterward, nobody would even know. Strategically, this is the only way we thought we could do it.”

Kaepernick is leprosy to NFL owners, pure and simple

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AP

Kaepernick is leprosy to NFL owners, pure and simple

Colin Kaepernick offered to work out for the Tennessee Titans after Marcus Mariota’s injury. The Titans refused to consider it.

And so ends yet another installment in the continuing saga, “Why This Isn’t About Football And Never Was.”

Kaepernick is leprosy to NFL owners, pure and simple. Worse, he is the abject lesson the players are supposed to learn about those who get out of line. His quarterbacking skills have never mattered in the issue of why he remains not only unemployed but unconsidered.

I mean, how else does a blackball without evidence survive?

The latest story, as reported by Jason LaCanfora of CBS, merely reinforces what people who aren’t nailgunned to football came to realize months ago -- that Kaepernick is perceived by the owners as the reason why they were confronted with the angry overbelly of American society and why they might have lost ratings points and money a year ago.

Thus, when poor innocents like Brandon Weeden are signed instead of Kaepernick, they get savaged as though they were the ones who screwed him. Kaepernick is fully an ex-football player because the 32 owners have done a rare thing here – maintained internal discipline.

There has never been another issue in league history save crushing the union and squeezing the networks in which the owners have been in agreement. They are highly competitive billionaires used only to getting their own way, and some even care about football.

Thus, the current dearth of competent quarterbacks, which would typically cause at least a few of them to cast a wide net for anything that moves and has an arm, would have gotten Kaepernick a look long before this.

But in this singular case, it does not, because he gave the industry a problem it hasn’t figured out how to conquer in the traditional ways (like throwing more football at the problem, a la televising the combine), and they miraculously all agreed that wherever the bar is for competence, he and he alone is and shall always be below it.

In short, the only way Colin Kaepernick ever plays in the National Football League again is if someone in a big mahogany-and-ermine suite breaks ranks in the faces of his or her fellow suites, and that’s simply not the way for smart people to bet.

Ever.