BREAKING NEWS Huntsville mayor issues statement about Wednesday's protest Full Story

NFL players kneel, raise fists or sit out National Anthem as preseason gets in full swing

The NFL's warmup games are in full swing -- and the National Anthem protests are back.Several players...

Posted: Aug 10, 2018 10:01 PM
Updated: Aug 10, 2018 10:02 PM

The NFL's warmup games are in full swing -- and the National Anthem protests are back.

Several players on Thursday took a knee, raised a fist or did not take to the field while the anthem was played before a dozen games as the league's first full week of preseason contests kicked off.

Football (American)

NFL

NFL National Anthem protests

Protests and demonstrations

Sports and recreation

Sports organizations and teams

Athletes

Government and public administration

Government bodies and offices

US federal government

White House

Colin Kaepernick

Sports figures

Donald Trump

Political Figures - US

The action comes weeks after the league suspended what was supposed to be a new policy barring such demonstrations.

The anthem protests -- meant to draw attention to racial injustice -- have happened with varying participation since 2016, pulling the NFL into a public debate that has seen President Donald Trump call on team owners to stem them.

In Philadelphia, Eagles defensive end Michael Bennett walked out of the tunnel Thursday during the anthem and headed to the team bench ahead of a game against the visiting Pittsburgh Steelers, the Philadelphia Daily News reported.

Eagles captain Malcolm Jenkins and cornerback De'Vante Bausby raised their fists during the song.

"I just think it's important to keep this conversation going, that we don't let it get stagnant," Jenkins said after the game, according to NFL.com. "You know, as we understand it, everybody's kind of waiting to see what the league is going to do. ... It's just my personal decision to keep these things at the forefront."

Trump, as he has in the past, took notice.

"The NFL players are at it again - taking a knee when they should be standing proudly for the National Anthem," the President tweeted Friday morning. "Numerous players, from different teams, wanted to show their 'outrage' at something that most of them are unable to define. They make a fortune doing what they love."

Trump continued: "Be happy, be cool! A football game, that fans are paying soooo much money to watch and enjoy, is no place to protest. Most of that money goes to the players anyway. Find another way to protest. Stand proudly for your National Anthem or be Suspended Without Pay!"

In Miami on Thursday night, Dolphins wide receivers Kenny Stills and Albert Wilson knelt during the anthem ahead of their game against Tampa Bay, The Miami Herald reported. Dolphins defensive end Robert Quinn raised his fist during the song, according to WTVJ.

In Jacksonville, several Jaguars -- including Jalen Ramsey, Telvin Smith, Leonard Fournette and T.J. Yeldon -- were not on the field as the anthem played ahead of their game against the New Orleans Saints, The Florida Times-Union reported.

It wasn't immediately clear how many players overall protested during Thursday's 12 NFL preseason games.

Donté Stallworth takes issue with Trump's tweets

Former NFL wide receiver Donté Stallworth, a CNN contributor, took issue Friday with Trump's assertion that protesters weren't able to define what outraged them.

"When you look at people who are in prisons today, close to 60% of the prison population are people of color -- these are the things that the players" are protesting, Stallworth told CNN's Kate Bolduan. "They are eloquent and articulate, and they've explicitly said why they are protesting.

"I think that one of the best things that the players have talked about is that they've tried their best to ignore the President and continue to go to their local city halls, continue to meet with governors and attorneys generals, continue to donate hundreds of thousands, and even ... millions of dollars" toward equality causes.

NFL had shelved its new anti-protest policy

The NFL said it won't punish the players who took part in Thursday's protests, noting it had shelved what was supposed to be a new policy on anthem conduct until it reaches an agreement with the NFL Players Association.

In May, team owners, reacting to a public backlash against the protests, issued a policy requiring that all team personnel who decide to be on the field during the song "shall stand and show respect for the flag and the Anthem."

Players would be allowed to stay in the locker room during the anthem if they chose -- but if any team personnel did kneel on the field, the team would be fined. The teams then could decide how and whether to punish offending personnel.

But in July, the players association filed a grievance, saying the new policy infringed upon player rights and was enacted without consulting the union.

A week later, the NFL said it would put the policy on hold so it could discuss a solution with the association.

Colin Kaepernick kicked off the protests in 2016

The anthem controversy has been rumbling since 2016 when then-San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick knelt during the anthem to draw attention to racial injustice.

An increasing number of players joined him, but critics perceived the protests as unpatriotic and disrespectful of the American flag and US military.

The issue came to a head when Trump said in September that NFL owners should tell protesting players, "Get that son of a bitch off the field right now, he's fired. He's fired!"

Soon more players began to kneel during the anthem, and the controversy in the most popular sports league in America became a partisan talking point.

In a tweet, Kaepernick lauded Stills and Wilson, two of the Dolphins who protested Thursday night.

"My brother @kstills continued his protest of systemic oppression tonight by taking a knee. Albert Wilson @iThinkIsee12 joined him in protest. Stay strong brothers!" the tweet reads.

Kaepernick has not been hired by any NFL team since he became a free agent in 2017. He has filed a grievance against the NFL, saying team owners colluded to deny him a job because of the protests.

CLARIFICATION: This story has been updated to remove a reference to 10 Giants players kneeling in the end zone. The players did this before the anthem was played and may not have been protesting the anthem. It is a common practice by some players to kneel and pray in the end zone before the anthem begins.

Huntsville
Broken Clouds
79° wxIcon
Hi: 83° Lo: 68°
Feels Like: 81°
Florence
Few Clouds
80° wxIcon
Hi: 85° Lo: 70°
Feels Like: 83°
Fayetteville
Broken Clouds
77° wxIcon
Hi: 82° Lo: 68°
Feels Like: 79°
Decatur
Scattered Clouds
78° wxIcon
Hi: 83° Lo: 68°
Feels Like: 80°
Scottsboro
Broken Clouds
77° wxIcon
Hi: 84° Lo: 68°
Feels Like: 78°
WAAY Radar
WAAY WAAY-TV Cam
WAAY Temperatures

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 18554

Reported Deaths: 651
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Mobile2284118
Jefferson1884103
Montgomery182343
Tuscaloosa82216
Marshall7059
Franklin5788
Lee55834
Shelby52220
Tallapoosa43266
Butler41918
Walker3812
Elmore3729
Chambers35926
Madison3464
Morgan2981
Unassigned2972
Baldwin2929
Dallas2873
Etowah26212
Lowndes25912
DeKalb2573
Autauga2395
Coffee2391
Sumter2287
Houston2265
Bullock2156
Pike2080
Colbert1872
Hale1799
Russell1770
Barbour1771
Marengo1746
Lauderdale1692
Calhoun1653
Wilcox1547
Choctaw15310
Cullman1501
Clarke1492
St. Clair1311
Randolph1287
Marion12411
Dale1230
Pickens1215
Talladega1175
Limestone1080
Chilton1051
Greene954
Winston910
Macon874
Jackson833
Henry812
Covington811
Crenshaw783
Bibb761
Escambia753
Washington726
Blount631
Lawrence510
Monroe452
Geneva440
Perry420
Conecuh411
Coosa401
Cherokee383
Clay282
Lamar260
Fayette160
Cleburne151

Tennessee Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 24833

Reported Deaths: 388
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Davidson542965
Shelby5428119
Trousdale13944
Rutherford132128
Hamilton93516
Sumner93146
Lake8350
Bledsoe6101
Williamson57711
Putnam5196
Robertson5165
Tipton4593
Wilson4428
Knox4365
Out of TN4264
Bedford2954
Montgomery2833
Rhea2140
Hardeman2010
Madison1732
Bradley1611
Unassigned1610
Macon1583
Loudon1570
McMinn14414
Cheatham1350
Fayette1252
Cumberland1191
Dickson1180
Maury1050
Sevier942
Blount933
Washington750
Coffee740
Monroe692
Wayne640
Gibson631
Sullivan602
Lauderdale591
Hickman580
Dyer570
Franklin541
Greene522
Unicoi480
Obion433
Hamblen432
Marion421
Anderson411
DeKalb380
Smith371
White340
Hawkins342
Marshall331
Lawrence330
Haywood332
Overton320
Cannon320
Grundy311
Henry310
Lincoln290
Jefferson280
Carroll281
Meigs270
Weakley260
Warren260
Perry240
Hardin222
Cocke210
Sequatchie190
Carter191
Johnson190
Jackson190
Polk180
Campbell181
Morgan170
Roane160
Crockett162
Humphreys151
McNairy150
Henderson150
Stewart130
Claiborne120
Chester120
Fentress120
Giles120
Scott120
Grainger110
Clay80
Houston80
Benton71
Moore50
Decatur50
Van Buren40
Union40
Pickett30
Lewis30
Hancock10

 

 

Community Events