Tags: nfl | anthem | protests

NFL Anthem Protests Spread as Season Openers Mark 9/11

Image: NFL Anthem Protests Spread as Season Openers Mark 9/11

Giant American flag is spread before Seattle Seahawks game. (Screengrab of YouTube video)

By    |   Monday, 12 Sep 2016 07:24 AM

NFL anthem protests spread during the league's season openers on Sunday as several players demonstrated with various gestures as the national anthem played while the National Football League recognized the 15th anniversary of the 9/11 terrorists attacks before all of its games.

Miami Dolphins Arian Foster, Jelani Jenkins, Michael Thomas, and Kenny Stills went to one knee while the national anthem played in Seattle during the game against the Seahawks, said Reuters.

During Thursday night's season opener in Denver where the defending Super Bowl champions were playing the Carolina Panthers, Broncos linebacker Brandon Marshall knelt during the anthem, said Reuters.

In Kansas City before the Chiefs game with the San Diego Chargers, Kansas City player Marcus Peters raised his fist during the national anthem. In Glendale, Arizona, where the New England Patriots played the Arizona Cardinals in their nationally-televised game, the Patriots' Devin McCourty and Martellus Bennett raised a fist, said the Washington Post.

Reuters said it wasn't clear whether a Sports Illustrated-posted photo showing Tennessee Titans players Jurrell Casey, Wesley Woodyard and Jason McCourty raising their fists was taken before or during the national anthem.

The Seattle Seahawks chose to link arms during the game as a sign of unity, reported ESPN. Wide receiver Doug Baldwin released a video explaining the meaning of the gesture.

"We are a team comprised of individuals with diverse backgrounds," Baldwin said during the video. "And as a team, we have chosen to stand and interlock arms in unity. We honor those who have fought for the freedom we cherish. And we stand to ensure the riches of freedom and the security of justice for all people. Progress can and will be made only if we stand together."



Baldwin's video, posted on his Facebook page Saturday, had received more than 824,000 views by Monday.

Several players from the Chiefs linked their arms together as well, in a sign of solidarity, the team said in a statement, reported Reuters.

"It was our goal to be unified as a team and to be respectful of everyone's opinions, and the remembrance of 9/11," the team's statement said. "It's our job as professional athletes to make a positive impact on our communities and to be proactive when change is needed. Together we are going to continue to have conversations, educate ourselves and others on social issues and work with local law enforcement officials and leaders to make an impact on the Kansas City community."

The national anthem protests were started by San Francisco 49ers' quarterback Colin Kaepernick.

While at least one fan decided burn Kaepernick's jersey in a video that went viral last month, the quarterback's jersey sales topped all other NFL players as of last week, said Forbes magazine.

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NFL anthem protests spread during the league's season openers on Sunday as several players demonstrated with various gestures as the national anthem played while the National Football League recognized the 15th anniversary of the 9/11 terrorists attacks before all of its games.
nfl, anthem, protests
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2016-24-12
Monday, 12 Sep 2016 07:24 AM
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