Houston Texans Won't Sign Anthem Protesters


The sideshow of the national anthem protests has damaged the standing of the NFL in the eyes of both detractors who think there is no place for it on the football field and detractors who believe they do not go far enough.

When NFL free agency starts on March 14, it appears that the Texans are going to actively avoid signing any players who have protested during the national anthem over the past two years. It's quite another for free agents to be interested in the Texans, given the perception that McNair has animosity toward players who have taken a stand.

A column in the Houston Chronicle on Saturday said, "there is no directive within the organization, but it is considered to be understood that ... the pool of potential signees and draftees will not include anyone who has participated in protests or are likely to".

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Texans team owner and noted Trump donor Robert McNair landed himself in hot water back in October for his poor comments made in reference to anthem protests, saying he and his fellow owners "can't have the inmates running the prison". Later that day, Texans star wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins failed to show up for practice in response to McNair's remark, sparking a divide between the owner and his players.

McNair's current stance isn't as clear as Ross's - the Chronicle cited two player agents who were third-hand sources - but an unwillingness by the Texans to add such players would be in line with McNair's actions past year.