Players Union: 2019 Super Bowl Kneeling Policy Leaves Decision Up to Players

Labor News

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Reprinted from Bustle by  on February 2, 2019.

The Los Angeles Rams will take on the New England Patriots in Super Bowl LIII on February 3, 2019. As the game approaches, you may be wondering if there’s a Super Bowl 2019 kneeling policy in place after last year’s announcement that the NFL would be barring players from kneeling on the field. Notably, the enforcement of this policy was suspended last July after the National Football League Players Association (NFLPA) filed a grievance — and there is currently no new anthem-related policy in place.

In order to allow this constructive dialogue [between the NFL and NFLPA] to continue, we have come to a standstill agreement on the NFLPA’s grievance and on the NFL’s anthem policy. No new rules relating to the anthem will be issued or enforced for the next several weeks while these confidential discussions are ongoing. …

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Super Bowl Spectacle Demonstrates the Cost of Public Funding

Reprinted from Jacobin by Tom Joyce on February 3, 2019.

“Georgia doesn’t have money for social services, but taxpayers gave $700 million for the stadium that’s hosting tonight’s Super Bowl,” writes Tom Joyce in Jacobin.

“As you’re watching Super Bowl LIII tonight at the cutting-edge Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta, Georgia, just remember why that stadium is there and who benefits most from it.

“The venue, home to the Atlanta Falcons, cost $1.6 billion to construct and opened in 2017. But the Falcons alone did not pay for their state-of-the-art, energy-efficient arena. Georgians contributed $700 million to the project in taxes, despite the team’s owner, Arthur Blank, having an estimated $4.7 billion net worth, according to Forbes.

“While this deal between the state and the Falcons may sound ludicrous, it is part of a trend of billionaire NFL owners screwing over working-class Americans by extracting copious amounts of public money from them.

“Although publicly funded stadiums exist in all sports, the NFL is the worst offender. Since 1997, nearly $7 billion in public money has gone to building and maintaining NFL stadiums for the benefit of the league. NFL stadiums built in the past twenty years have received around $238 million in public funding, on average. …

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LeBron James, Kevin Durant Show Support for Colin Kaepernick Before Super Bowl

Reprinted from Sports Illustrated by Emily Caron on February 2, 2019.

NBA stars LeBron James and Kevin Durant showed their support for quarterback Colin Kaepernick, sporting the unsigned signal caller’s limited edition “#IMWITHKAP” jerseys on Super Bowl weekend.

James has previously voiced his support for Colin Kaepernick both as an NFL quarterback and as the face of the 30th anniversary of Nike’s “Just Do It.” campaign. James has worn Kaepernick-exclusive gear before.

“Thank you to my Brother @easymoneysniper for rockin with me, especially this week!” he captioned a photo of the Warriors star in his jersey. …

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Jeff Burman represents assistant editors on the Guild’s Board of Directors. He can be reached at

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