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Aaron Rodgers '100 percent supportive' of players who choose to protest national anthem

By Alex Butler
Aaron Rodgers '100 percent supportive' of players who choose to protest national anthem
Green Bay Packers Quarterback Aaron Rodgers looks to pass against the Washington Redskins in their pre-season game at FedEx Field in Landover, Md. on August 19. Photo by Kevin Dietsch/UPI | License Photo

Aug. 31 (UPI) -- Green Bay Packers superstar Aaron Rodgers will stand for the national anthem, but he will support other players who choose not to.

Rodgers recently sat down for an interview with ESPN, where he talked about free agent quarterback Colin Kaepernick and other trending NFL topics.

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Kaepernick, who opted out of the final year of his contract this offseason with the San Francisco 49ers, is still a free agent as the NFL season approaches on September 7.

Rodgers said that he thinks Kaepernick "should be on a roster right now."

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"I think because of his protests, he's not," Rodgers told ESPN.

Rodgers, 33, has not been among those players kneeling, sitting or exercising before games while the anthem has played.

"I'm gonna stand because that's the way I feel about the flag -- but I'm also 100 percent supportive of my teammates or any fellow players who are choosing not to," Rodgers told ESPN. "They have a battle for racial equality. That's what they're trying to get a conversation started around."

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"I think the best way I can say this is: I don't understand what it's like to be in that situation. What it is to be pulled over, or profiled, or any number of issues that have happened, that Colin was referencing -- or any of my teammates have talked to me about."

Former San Francisco 49ers QB Colin Kaepernick (7) kneels alongside teammate Eric Reid during the National Anthem before playing the Los Angeles Rams at Levi's Stadium on September 12 in Santa Clara, Calif. File photo by Bruce Gordon/UPI

Kaepernick began the protests last season. He has explained that the decision was to protest police brutality and racial inequality.

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell has left it up to individual NFL franchises to govern the protests.

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Rodgers also discussed his former teammate Ryan O'Callaghan in the article. O'Callaghan came out as gay in June through an article for OutSports.com. O'Callaghan said that he became close friends with Rodgers during his college career at Cal.

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The quarterback said he was "incredibly proud" of O'Callaghan.

Rodgers is far from the only athlete to chime in on their stance regarding Kaepernick. Hall of Famer Jim Brown also spoke about the free agent quarterback last week.

"Colin has to make up his make up his mind whether he is truly an activist or whether he is a football player," Brown told the Post Game. "If you try to be both, in a situation ...football is commercial. You have owners. You have fans and you want to honor that, if you are making that kind of money."

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