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Eagles Undrafted Rookie Linebacker Tells ESPN He Will Be Sitting During The National Anthem During Thursday's Preseason Game


ESPN - Tavarres said he almost sat during the anthem ceremony preceding Saturday night’s game against the Colts in Indianapolis, and he plans to follow through when the Eagles host the New York Jets in their preseason finale Thursday night.

“Oh, I thought about it. Believe me, I definitely thought about it,” Tavarres said of sitting Saturday night. “And usually I’m front and center on the line with the rest of the guys, and that’s since pre-K all the way up. Saturday’s game, I stepped back, I was in the background, and it didn’t feel right to me at all, and so I will be taking a stand — or sitting down — for the fourth game.”

Eagles defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz had an open forum on the topic during a group meeting Monday, according to multiple players. Several people spoke, including Malcolm Jenkins, Leodis McKelvin and Tavarres, one source in attendance said.

“We’ve got an issue in this country in this day and age, and I feel like somebody needs to step up and we all need to step up,” Tavarres said. “We’ve got that right. There’s just a lot going on that people don’t want to talk about, and I feel like us as athletes, we’re looked at as role models. And I feel like with Colin Kaepernick, he’s doing a great job for standing up in what he believes in, and most people may not like that, but that’s his opinion, he’s entitled to it, and I respect him for doing it.”

Tavarres is an undrafted rookie out of Incarnate Word. He made the first round of cuts, as the Eagles recently trimmed their roster to 74 players, and is trying to make the team to contribute mainly on special teams.

He indicated that some people in the building are aware of his plans but said he hasn’t had a conversation with his coaches yet.

“In this situation, I’ve really got nothing to lose,” he said. “I’m a rookie free agent, haven’t signed any major contract, so there’s not a lot of money on the line, I don’t have any big endorsement deals on the line. Really what’s at stake is my pride and what kind of man would I be and what kind of African-American would I be if I didn’t stand my ground on this issue we have today? [It] needs to be done. Will there be backlash? Probably. I don’t think anyone has bought my jersey yet, so I don’t know if it’s going to be burned, but it’s a major issue and I’m definitely going to stand my ground for this one.”

Batten down the hatches, America! Soon to be unemployed undrafted rookie LB Myke Tavarres is here to add his two cents on the subject of cultural oppression. Because if also soon to be unemployed Colin Kaepernick couldn’t solve race relations in this country, I’m sure that ol’ Myke Tavarres bump is gonna do the trick.

Listen, I realize there’s still rampant racism in this country and there are problems that need to be solved to better society. I get it. All I’m saying is, Myke, my man, you’re an fringe undrafted free agent player that’s going into another round of cuts. Hundreds of thousands of dollars, if not millions could be at stake here, bub. Maybe, just maybe, be super selfish one time and put your own personal life ahead of the greater cause. If he stirs the pot and creates drama on Thursday, he’s not an untouchable like Tom Brady, Von Miller, or Todd Gurley. More likely than not, Myke will be casualty of his own war. And in the end, becoming a megastar in the NFL and THEN going after what’s right will go farther for the cause than being a scrub going out of his way for attention in a meaningless preseason game. Don’t lose the forest through the trees, Myke.

At least I can respect Myke doing a non-violent protest that doesn’t directly affect common lives like stopping traffic. I could care less what the fuck message you’re trying to spread lying in the middle of a highway. It could be a Bernie, Black Lives Matter, or a Goddamn puppy walk featuring naked supermodels. It doesn’t matter. If you bring traffic to a halt and directly affect my life for more than 2 minutes, you automatically make me favor whatever you’re protesting against. Without fail, every damn time. You are hereby declared an enemy of the state of Smitty. If you think you have the right to stop my day then I have the right to run you over. This is America.

UPDATE: All about the morals.