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The NFL's ratings are down 29 percent this year and many fans attribute the drop to players protesting the national anthem.

According to a Yahoo Sports and YouGov poll, 40 percent of NFL fans said they are watching less football because players are following Colin Kaepernick's lead and taking a knee during the pre-game rendition of "The Star-Spangled Banner."

Kaepernick, the San Francisco 49ers current starting quarterback, started his demonstration against police brutality during the preseason.

Former NFL long snapper and Green Beret Nate Boyer and former NFL wide receiver Randall Hill joined Brian Kilmeade on "Fox & Friends" this morning to react.

Boyer said there's a possibility that the protests are partly to blame for the ratings decline, but there are other factors, such as the presidential election, the retirement of iconic player Peyton Manning and Tom Brady's four game suspension.

"It could be a number of things," Hill agreed. "I'm not going to blame that on Colin Kaepernick taking a knee. There's a lot of things going on here in the U.S."

In particular, Hill pointed to the "soap opera" race between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton.

Boyer said he believes that Kaepernick and other players have a right to protest in their own way, and NFL fans also have the right to protest by not watching football. 

"That's what's great about our country. You can agree, you can disagree. And no one cuts your head off."

What do you think? Let us know in the comments below.

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