And then Eric Reid, the Carolina Panther player who originally knelt with Kaepernick back in 2016, responded to Smith on Twitter by likening Smith to a tap-dancing sellout.
Smith accuses Kaepernick of not really wanting to play for refusing to “capitulate to the NFL’s” demands to a workout without any media present at the predetermined location in Flowery Branch, Georgia, home of the Atlanta Falcons. Kaepernick changed locations to 60 miles south at Charles Drew High School in Riverdale, Georgia, just south of Atlanta.
“Twenty-five teams show up in Georgia at the Atlanta Falcons practice facility — state of the art facility, NFL personnel, equipment, video, everything, and what does Colin Kaepernick do,” Smith said, “Colin Kaepernick wants to change the venue.”
“He don’t want to play,” Smith added after taking a long pause for emphasis. “He wants to be a martyr.”
The ESPN sports reporter continued his tirade by saying Kaepernick’s supposed plan backfired.
“Guess what? It ain’t working this time. All of us believe that Colin Kaepernick would have showed out, and if he had showed out, I believe he would have had a job inside of two weeks,” Smith said. “But it didn’t happen, because he didn’t show. He wanted to show up at a high school in Georgia, not an NFL facility and then YouTube it live.”
Smith then said Kaepernick had run out of chances of ever getting signed to an NFL team.
“You don’t want to work. You just want to make noise and you want to control the narrative,” Smith said, adding that “It’s over.”
Listen to Smith’s passionate denouncement of Kaepernick’s last-second venue change below:
After Smith’s comments went viral, Reid came to the defense of his friend Kaepernick and blasted Smith with this mocking meme. He accused Smith of “tap dancing” for the NFL:
.@stephenasmith Tap dancing for the NFL like ⬇️. Damn straight Colin wants to control the narrative! He supposed to trust the organization that blackballed him and has done absolutely nothing in good faith??? Born on Tuesday, just not last Tuesday. https://t.co/EKztmcrDbu pic.twitter.com/gz0xnDe10e
— Eric Reid (@E_Reid35) November 17, 2019
Flip the page to read Smith’s extremely long Twitter clap back at Reid’s accusation that Smith is a “tap-dancing” sellout.