clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

The aftermath of Mike Pence’s exit from 49ers-Colts

Was it all a stunt?

If you buy something from an SB Nation link, Vox Media may earn a commission. See our ethics statement.

The Vice President just doesn’t "leave" a sporting event before the 1st quarter. United States Vice President Mike Pence made a visit to Lucas Oil Stadium for what people dubbed “Peyton Manning Day” but would be out of the stadium before kickoff. Pence sent out a few tweets with pictures of him in Colts gear and promptly left after witnessing more kneel-downs from the San Francisco 49ers, the team that started all of this in the first place and still doing it five games into the 2017 season.

There’s a story on the walkout you can read here, but here’s the tweet that’s important:

Following the game, 49ers safety Eric Reid had some thoughts on the walk-out. Reid was one of the first to join former 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick kneeling down in the initial protest. He also has a New York Times article explaining his reasoning behind his decision. Here’s what Reid said following the game:

“First of all, does anyone remember the last time he went to a football game? [silence] With that said, he tweeted out a 3-year-old photo of the Colts game. So with the information that I have, the last time he’s been to a Colts game was three years ago. So this looks like a PR stunt. He knew our team has the most players protest. He knew we were probably going to do it again. This is what systemic oppression looks like; a man with power comes into a game, tweets a couple of things, then leaves the game with an attempt to thwart our efforts. Again, based on the information that I have, that’s the assumption that I made.”

The comments about the three year old photos may have something to do with the discrepancy in two tweets by Pence. One where he’s decked out in Colts gear and another where he and his wife are in different attire (notice the jersey number difference in her Colts jersey and who stands behind them in each photo). It appears both pictures were from previous visits, but the whole situation is a little confusing in that regard.

The walk-out and Reid’s subsequent comments have been making headlines, but there’s a bit more to consider. NBC National News Correspondent Peter Alexander hinted that the whole thing may have been predetermined from the start:

There hasn’t been any hard evidence on if this was a planned stunt or if Pence really left the game disgusted, but it’s safe to assume that more information is going to come out in the coming days given the traffic all of this has gotten. President Trump was quick to chime in on the issue in support of Pence. He even went as far to say he told Pence to leave if there was protest:

Following all of this, the NFLPA issued this statement following Reid’s comments: