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Will the 49ers be the fourth team to cancel Thursday’s practice?

The Packers, Colts, and Jets have already done so Thursday morning

San Francisco 49ers v Arizona Cardinals Photo by Chris Coduto/Getty Images

On the fourth anniversary of when former San Francisco 49ers’ quarterback Colin Kaepernick first publicly began his protest against racial inequality and police brutality in America, the NBA’s Milwaukee Bucks made a major statement.

The Bucks never took the floor before they were supposed to play the Orlando Magic in Game 5 of their series. The Magic left the court, and word began to spread that the other two postseason games on Wednesday’s schedule were postponed. Players from the Houston Rockets, Oklahoma City Thunder, Los Angeles Lakers, and L.A. Clippers all decided that some things are bigger than basketball.

Many NFL and NBA players have been vocal about social justice issues since the murder of George Floyd by Minneapolis police officers. They joined protests across the country following the video’s release, and many NBA players said they didn’t want to take away from the message by returning to play in the bubble. The players relented and made the trip anyway, but have been outspoken about racial issues during postgame press conferences, and on their own social media pages.

Now, after the police-involved shooting of 29-year-old African-American man Jacob Blake in Kenosha, Wisconsin, some NBA players are pushing for the league to end the season.

Blake was shot seven times in the back by a Kenosha Police Officer in front of his children. Eye-witnesses posted videos of the incident on social media in which three officers can be seen shouting with their weapons pointed at Blake, while he walks around of a parked SUV. When Blake opened the door and reached inside (reports indicate that a knife was found in his vehicle), one officer pulls his shirt and fires into the vehicle. The investigation is ongoing, but Bucks players reportedly reached out to Wisconsin Attorney General Josh Kaul, overseeing the case— to see what they could do. Two officers who were at the scene are on administrative leave.

The remaining NBA players in the bubble held a meeting Wednesday evening, which was full of tension, leading to superstar LeBron James walking out of the meeting, according to The Athletic’s Shams Charania:

The NBA and NFL have similar demographics, with more than 70% of their players being African-American. If the NBA players union decides it’s time to shut it down, would NFL players do the same before the season kicks-off in just three weeks?

Major League Baseball, Major League Soccer, and the WNBA also postponed games, following the NBA’s lead, perhaps the NFL is next.

Some NFL players spoke out on Twitter following Blake’s shooting and the news that the three NBA playoff games were postponed:

The Detroit Lions canceled practice due to Blake’s shooting, Washington did away with its Thursday practice session, and almost every NFL club released a statement on social media condemning the incident. Commissioner Roger Goodell admitted that the league handled Kaepernick’s protest wrong, and apologized for not listening to the quarterback about the reasons he was kneeling during the national anthem. On Thursday morning, the Packers, Colts, and Jets all canceled practice.

The NBA players are basically on strike, so this will hurt their personal bottom-lines. NFL players don’t have the security of guaranteed contracts, which could lead to some union members being forced to make a tough decision.

If the NBA does decide to finish their season to try and induce a change in America, it’s hard not to see some NFL players following suit. The NBA and its players have been at the forefront of discussions surrounding racism in the country, and how there needs to be systemic change. While some NFL players have been vocal as well, they don’t seem to be on the same page yet when it comes to any potential interruptions to the league’s schedule.

That could change in the coming weeks in response to Blake’s shooting, or if another police-involved shooting takes place during the season.

We’ve already seen some teams in the NFL take action. The 49ers have had discussions as a team about social injustices happening in the United States. Will they be the next team to cancel practice or take it a step further and not play in games this season?