Though he was one of the first players to silently protest alongside Colin Kaepernick, Robert Quinn isn't yet sure if that will continue. When talking with Chicago media on Thursday morning, the Bears' defensive end voiced frustrations with how his original protests were perceived, and explained why it's made him unsure about his plans for 2020.
"Well, here's the thing, I don't know how many years I've done it, the media always switched it to badgering the flag," he said. "I don't know why now the severity has changed so much. There's been multiple lives lost. And from, I don't know when, I guess when Kaepernick first started or when it first started, what was that, six, seven years ago, and we're still protesting and arguing about the same thing, you know?
"I look at myself in the mirror everyday and I see people like me being harassed for absolutely no reason. So the simple fact that now for whatever reason the message is trying to be, I guess, more pushed. To me, it's very frustrating because there has been so many lives lost through the years that people have just swept under the rug and I'm sorry. It's frustrating. So .. how about this? I don't know. I'll think about it."
Quinn has already been protesting on sidelines for many years, dating back to his time with the Rams and Dolphins from 2016-2018. He didn't raise his fist during his tenure with Dallas, but made clear that it wasn't a decision made because of owner Jerry Jones' 2017 threat that any player who 'disrespects the flag' wouldn't play.
"I came to peace of mind. That's not to say over the situation, I made peace," he said. "I have my family. How about this – I had people come to me that said before I even went to the Cowboys that I'm messing up my money by protesting. People that looked like me. So the fact that I went to the Cowboys it was more peace of mind, either you can face reality of trying to make change in America or you can worry about messing up your money. The fact that I had that situation, it kind of hurt me, honestly."
Bears' Robert Quinn doesn't know if he'll go back to sideline protests in 2020 originally appeared on NBC Sports Chicago