NASHVILLE, Tenn. – While dozens of NFL players across the league have taken knees or locked arms with their team owners during the national anthem in a show of solidarity after an attack from President Trump during his Huntsville speech on Friday, the Tennessee Titans stayed in the locker room altogether for the anthem.
So did their opponents, the Seattle Seahawks.
The Titans organization released a short statement explaining their decision:
“As a team, we wanted to be unified in our actions today. The players jointly decided this was the best course of action. Our commitment to the military and our community is resolute and the absence of our team for the national anthem shouldn’t be misconstrued as unpatriotic.”
The president attacked players who protested by kneeling during the national anthem in his Friday speech, calling them “sons of bitches.” He said NFL owners should fire any players who take part in the protests.
The president says protesting during the anthem is disrespectful.
The NFL anthem protests began last season with Colin Kaepernick, then a quarterback for the San Francisco 49ers. He said he kneeled during the anthem because of unaddressed racism in the country, specifically in response to incidents where police have killed unarmed black men.
No team has rostered Kaepernick this season.
However, other players have picked up the form of silent protest.
After the president’s remarks in Huntsville, the demonstrations have become much more widespread, with many NFL owners even choosing to participate.