Tags: rishard matthews | quit | nfl | stand | anthem

Rishard Matthews Tweets He'll Quit NFL If Standing Is Mandated

Rishard Matthews Tweets He'll Quit NFL If Standing Is Mandated

Tennessee Titans Rishard Matthews (18) plays in a game against the Jacksonville Jaguars during an NFL football game Sunday, Sept. 17, 2017, in Jacksonville, Fla. (Tom DiPace via AP)

By    |   Friday, 13 October 2017 04:13 PM

Rishard Matthews, wide receiver for the Tennessee Titans, said he would quit professional football rather than stand, stay in the locker room, or pay a fine if the NFL imposes a rule requiring players to stand during the national anthem, WSMV-TV reported.

The statement came in a tweet, which was later deleted, with Matthews telling WSMV-TV it had been a "bad decision."

"Let's hope it doesn't get to that," Matthews told the station. "That was an ignorant thing that I tweeted out at that given moment."

Matthews, whose father served in the Marines and brother was killed in Afghanistan, has stayed in the locker room during the national anthem, ESPN noted.

"Sometimes people, as you all know, tweet some ignorant things out at some moments, and that was an ignorant thing I tweeted out at that given moment," Matthews said, according to ESPN. "I take full responsibility, and that's why it went down right after, but somebody caught me with a screenshot.

"It's unfortunate that I brought this distraction, but it is what it is. I'm a man, I take full responsibility."

Talk of the possibility of a new rule increased when NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell issued a statement saying, "We believe that everyone should stand for the National Anthem."

"The current dispute over the National Anthem is threatening to erode the unifying power of our game, and is now dividing us, and our players, from many fans across the country," Goodell's statement said.

"We want to honor our flag and our country, and our fans expect that of us," the statement continued. "We also care deeply about our players and respect their opinions and concerns about critical social issues. The controversy over the Anthem is a barrier to having honest conversations and making real progress on the underlying issues. We need to move past this controversy, and we want to do that together with our players."

Players, owners, and NFL executives will meet next week to discuss the controversy, the NFL said in a joint statement, adding that meeting will focus on "how to make progress on the important social issues that players have vocalized."

President Donald Trump, who has been a vocal critic of the protests, praised Goodell's statement in a tweet.

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Rishard Matthews, wide receiver for the Tennessee Titans, said he would quit professional football if the NFL imposes a rule requiring players to stand during the national anthem.
rishard matthews, quit, nfl, stand, anthem
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2017-13-13
Friday, 13 October 2017 04:13 PM
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