Skip navigation

The touted No2 pick in this weeks NFL draft has scrubbed his social media of conservative views. But fans and teammates value winning above politics

Take a trip through Nick Bosas social media accounts and you will find something interesting: the projected No2 overall pick has been deleting tweets and Instagram likes in the run-up to the NFL draft.

Bosa and his representatives have taken to systematically scrubbing the players social media, removing supportive references to President Trump, tweets about Colin Kaepernick (who he called a clown), and removing likes from Instagram posts on pictures that included the n-word and homophobic slurs in their captions.

The former Ohio State pass-rusher is expected to be selected second overall on Thursday night by the San Francisco 49ers, Kaepernicks former team, though there is still a chance he will be taken with the first overall pick. Interestingly, it appears Bosa made the changes to his social media specifically because he is going to a city considered a liberal haven. I had to, Bosa told ESPN in a story published this month about his deleted posts. There is a chance I might end up in San Francisco.

The first thing that should be said is that Bosa shouldnt just scrub those likes of posts involving homophobia and the n-word: he should apologise and renounce bigotry. As for his other posts on Trump and Kaepernick: he is perfectly entitled to his political views. Which raises an interesting question: how should players balance their marketability with their off-field opinions? There is no right or wrong answer. It depends on your perspective, your priorities.

Colin Kaepernick took a knee knowing he could be ostracised from the NFL. But giving his community a voice was more important to him than slinging footballs, no matter how much he loved his job. Bosas priorities appear different. The younger brother of Charger All-Pro Joey, and son of John, an ex-NFL pro with the Dolphins, Nicks family is well versed in the business of football and its commercial impact. His decision makes financial sense. But his lack of conviction is jarring.

Whether you agree or disagree with Bosas politics is beside the point. If he truly believed, like really believed in these causes and views, he would use that to promote his message, the way Chris Long, Michael Bennett and Kaepernick have done. San Francisco is liberal, sure. Maybe you distance yourself from some folks in the locker room. Maybe some of the Niners more liberal base grabs a Garoppolo jersey instead of a Bosa one. But you show conviction, not timidity. Rational people can respect that.

Besides, the reality of sports is this: winning cures all and most fans and teammates have an ability to avert their gaze as long as the sacks and pressures and Ws are flowing. Its sad, but its the truth. As long as Bosa is devouring quarterbacks, it wont matter if hes battling a cocaine addiction or getting a DUI with a stack of guns and a child in the car. Dallas fans still cheered for Greg Hardy despite a domestic violence incident that included throwing a woman onto a bed of guns. Fans and other players will wince at those headlines. Then go back to rooting for the name on the front of the jersey, ignoring the sins of the name on its back.

By comparison, questionable social media activity is small potatoes. And heres the other thing: just because the tweets and likes are deleted, doesnt mean theyre gone for good. Screen grabs and memories live on. If a Niners fan has already checked out on Bosa due to their support for Kaepernick or their political leanings, deleting tweets will not change their mind. And you can bet theyll still let out the slightest of fist pumps when Bosa drops Jameis Winston in week one. For some like Kaepernick having your voice heard is more important than the extra dollars from a sponsorship deal or jersey sales. For Bosa, its clear that its not.

Top five players in this years draft

Note: these are the most talented players available, not a prediction of the order in which they will be picked.

1) Nick Bosa, edge, Ohio State

Questionable social media strategy aside, Bosa is widely considered the best player in this years draft class on either side of the ball. Bosa missed most of this junior year after undergoing a core-muscle surgery. Yet his place atop draft boards was already assured thanks to a dominant sophomore campaign, in which he had the highest pass rush wins percentage in all of college football. Bosa finished the season with 25 hurries, 15 hits, nine sacks and three batted passes. It was a non-stop highlight package. Bosa will be really, really good, really, really fast. No one is a cant-miss prospect, but Bosa is about as close as you can get.

2) Quinnen Williams, defensive line, Alabama

Quinnen Williams sacks Texas A&M quarterback Kellen Mond during a game last season. Photograph: Butch Dill/AP

Pass rushers and pass blockers, thats what this draft is all about. Either get someone who can hit the other teams quarterback or grab someone who can protect your guy. Watch Williams play, and you will instantly be awed by the sheer spectacle of someone so big being able to move so fast. He is damn-near unstoppable off the snap. Talent wise, he would be a top-five pick in any year.

3) Josh Allen, edge, Kentucky

Yes, Allen is an excellent pass rusher. But hes so much more than that. He is a defensive chess piece who drifts between a bunch of different positions and makes plays all over the field. He has a turbocharged get-off and has been compared to Chicagos Khalil Mack.

4) Ed Oliver, defensive line, Houston

If you listen hard enough, you can hear the sound of 32 NFL defensive coordinators cajoling their general manager to find any way possible to grab Oliver in the upcoming draft.

Thanks to the dominance of Aaron Donald, small, twitchy, defensive linemen are all the range. The 287lbs Oliver is still considered small by the Donald-standard. He was even asked to perform linebacker drills by the Titans at this years combine. Id ask myself to play linebacker too, Oliver said at the time. He will play inside, outside, and stood up on Sundays. And he will be a potent force for years to come.

5) Kyler Murray, quarterback, Oklahoma

The likely No1 pick is the most electric player in the draft, regardless of position. He is the only quarterback in 20 years who comes close to matching the athleticism of Michael Vick. In the right offense, he can be a special weapon.

Two of the major concerns about Murray have been answered: his commitment; his slender frame. He spurned baseball to concentrate on being a quarterback full-time and he turned heads at the combine turning up at a bulked up 207lbs.

Theres no disputing his on-field performance or production. He wasnt as methodically brilliant as Baker Mayfield at Oklahoma but his highs were just as high wow throws delivered from the most bonkers of body positions; game-breaking runs. Someone will take him first overall. Will it be the Cardinals or the Raiders?

Read more:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *