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HUD Secretary Ben Carson on President Trump's views on athletes kneeling: 'He'll get there'

HUD Secretary Ben Carson on President Trump's views on athletes kneeling: 'He'll get there'

Ben Carson, former Presidential candidate and the lone African-American leading a cabinet agency in the Trump Administration, says he will “work with” President Trump to better understand why professional athletes kneel in protest during the national anthem. 

Trump was famously critical of then-San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick’s kneeling to protest police brutality against minority communities in the United States in 2016. 

Carson, the Housing and Urban Development Secretary, spoke to conservative radio host Hugh Hewitt on Monday and insisted President Trump could be convinced to soften his stance against kneeling protests. 

“Well, I don’t think he has manifested as much animosity in that region lately,” Carson told Hewitt. “And I think we just continue to work with him. He’ll get there.”

In a tweet on Sunday, Trump said he would not watch the NFL and indicated that held for United States men’s and women’s soccer games, too, if those players decided to kneel during the anthem. 

The United States Soccer Federation board on June 10 rescinded a 2017 rule that players had to stand for the national anthem. That rule was adopted when women’s star Megan Rapinoe knelt in solidarity with Kaepernick’s cause in 2016. 
Rapinoe was one of the first white athletes to kneel during the national anthem in September, 2016 when she did so during a National Women’s Soccer League game and again that month before a United States’ exhibition match against Thailand. 

Trump has sparred with Rapinoe directly on Twitter in the past, especially during Team USA’s championship performance at the World Cup in France last summer. Rapinoe had made clear in interviews during the tournament she would not be visiting the White House if the United States won and was invited. 

Just last week, Redskins running back Adrian Peterson, Cleveland Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield and Houston Texans coach Bill O’Brien all said they would kneel to protest police brutality when NFL games return this fall. 

"I think the important thing is if they are going to kneel during the national anthem that they make sure that people understand why they’re kneeling,” Carson told Hewitt on Monday. “A lot of people are under the impression that they’re kneeling because they don’t respect our national anthem or they don’t respect the flag or what it stands for. And in fact, I don’t think that’s the reason that most of them are kneeling. I think most of them are kneeling because they want to protest some brutality in the police forces. They need to make that very clear. And of course, now that that has been brought to national attention, I’m not sure if it needs to continue.”  

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Jordan Reed is set to continue his NFL career with a couple of familiar faces out west

Jordan Reed is set to continue his NFL career with a couple of familiar faces out west

Jordan Reed's first 329 receptions in the NFL came with Washington. Number 330, though, is likely going to happen out west.

Adam Schefter reported on Monday that the tight end is signing a one-year contract with the 49ers that is "incentive-laden." In that report, Schefter noted that Reed is currently healthy.

The 30-year-old didn't play at all for Washington in 2019 after suffering his latest concussion in a preseason collision. All kinds of injuries have plagued Reed as a pro, but it's the head trauma that is most worrisome. He has remained committed to staying in the league, however, and is slated to now do so with one of the sport's top contenders.

Reed will reunite with Kyle Shanahan, his old offensive coordinator, and Trent Williams, a longtime ex-teammate, with the Niners. The thought of him pairing up with George Kittle is frightening, as long as Reed can get right and return to somewhere that's even close to his usual form.

Reed was having a stellar training camp last summer before suffering that concussion in Atlanta. It's going to be nerve-racking watching him take hits again for San Fran — it has been nerve-racking for years now, in fact — but he believes he still has more to offer and the NFC West franchise clearly does as well.

Washington is scheduled to visit the 49ers this December. 

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Washington linebacker Josh Harvey-Clemons is opting out of the 2020 NFL season

Washington linebacker Josh Harvey-Clemons is opting out of the 2020 NFL season

The linebacker position is one of the more crowded spots on the Washington Football Team. That crowd decreased by one on Monday, though.

Josh Harvey-Clemons has opted out of the 2020 season, the team announced. The 26-year-old was set to enter his fourth year with the franchise and figured to compete for a depth spot for Ron Rivera and Jack Del Rio.

He is the second player on the Burgundy and Gold to make that choice this offseason. Lineman Caleb Brantley opted out last week, too.

A seventh-round draft pick in 2017, Harvey-Clemons has appeared in 35 regular season contests for Washington. He's mostly been a special teamer and reserve option since coming out of Louisville and wasn't a lock by any means to make the 2020 roster. 

The Harvey-Clemons news wasn't the only personnel move that came down on Monday.

The organization also waived three guys — defensive end Cameron Malveaux, defensive back Maurice Smith and tight end Caleb Wilson — and released running back Josh Ferguson. 

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