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LeBron James is taking his NFL rooting talents to the Cleveland Browns.
James mentioned during an Instagram Live conversation with Maverick Carter that he has switched allegiances from the Dallas Cowboys to the Browns because of the Cowboys’ policy in 2018 that players stand during the playing of the national anthem.
“Nah man, I had to sit out on the Cowboys, man. It’s just a lot of things that was going on during the, you know, when guys were kneeling,” James said during the live stream. “Guys were having freedom of speech and wanted to do it in a very peaceful manner. A lot of people in their front office and a lot of people that ran the organization was like, ‘If you do that around here, you will never play for this franchise again.’ I just didn’t think that was appropriate.”
Landon Buford @LandonBuford
LeBron James on why he’s not @dallascowboys fan anymore:
“Nah man I had to sit put on the Cowboys man. It just a things that were going on when guys were kneeling… [The] organization were like if do that around here you won’t play for this franchise again.”#DallasCowboys pic.twitter.com/gYusCcs8KY
James added that he still likes a lot of the players on the team, including wideout CeeDee Lamb, running back Ezekiel Elliott, linebacker Micah Parsons and cornerback Trevon Diggs, but he’s now “all-in on the Browns.”
In 2018, Cowboys owner Jerry Jones—in response to players kneeling during the national anthem in protest against racial discrimination and police brutality after former NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick first began the practice in 2016—told reporters that the team’s policy was “that you stand at the anthem, toe on the line.”
“But in general, I will speak for one, and everybody knows where we stand, and we stand as a team,” he added.
It is unclear if the Cowboys still have that policy, but defensive lineman Dontari Poe knelt during the anthem for the 2020 season after speaking about it with Jones.
James, 37, is from Akron, spent two stints with the Cleveland Cavaliers during his NBA career and is an avid Ohio State fan, so the Browns were the natural option for his NFL fandom after moving away from the Cowboys.
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