NFL: Players are encouraged but not required to stand for national anthem

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Twenty years ago, the NBA suspended a player who refused to stand for the national anthem. The NFL will not be doing the same thing.

“Players are encouraged but not required to stand during the playing of the National Anthem,” the NFL said in a statement issued Saturday, in response to the controversy that emerged when 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick opted not to stand during the playing of the national anthem on Friday night in Santa Clara, prior to a game against the Packers.

“I am not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses Black people and people of color,” Kaepernick has since said. “To me, this is bigger than football and it would be selfish on my part to look the other way. There are bodies in the street and people getting paid leave and getting away with murder.”

The NBA based its suspension of Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf on a rule that requires players to stand during the playing of the national anthem. The NFL has no such rule, and the Collective Bargaining Agreement is silent on the subject.

And so Kaepernick and any other player has the right to not stand during the national anthem. Whether other players will follow Kaepernick’s lead remains to be seen.

92 responses to “NFL: Players are encouraged but not required to stand for national anthem

  1. Our country has issues. Every country has issues. But please respect the country you live in or simply found another one. BTW: not every country will let you do that, so you might want to think about that Mr. Kapernick

  2. I’ll be glad when this over with. Unfortunately, I know this is just the beginning of a 2 month process.

  3. The NFL has no such rule, and the Collective Bargaining Agreement is silent on the subject.
    ________
    Since when did the CBA being silent on an issue ever stopped Dictator Goodell from punishing a player?

  4. Shame on Gödel and his brothers in New York. Then don’t play the we care card with the big flag and all the military holding the flag as planes fly over. Men and Women have lost their lives so this dip S can stand on the sidelines and the NFL releases this, we have no big ones answer. Gödel will fine ones for making football plays or wearing pink in non pink week and yet allows one to disrespect not only the flag but this country. The NFL and San Francisco organization should be over apologetic for this action instead we get it is OK. How Gödel can shake hands with one serviceman before a game is appalling, may these men and women turn their backs on the NFL and the hypocrite ways NFL display.

  5. This isn’t a big deal, we don’t even listen to the whole National Anthem because it’s too long. We only hear one out of FOUR verses the actual whole thing has. Yes Americans bet you didn’t know the National Anthem you hear at games is only 1/4th of the whole thing.

  6. I do hope Kaepernick realizes that those “bodies in the street” are not only one skin color. I also hope he knows how many American bodies have lain in foreign streets for the country they loved, and the country that this twerp is apparently so ashamed of.

  7. … but you are willing to accept money to entertain the same country. Hypocrite. That’s an empty gesture. It’s like a child pouting. You want to make a statement? Don’t play in protest, and forfeit your game check. Or even better, play and donate your game check to a cause.

  8. If you can’t at least stand for the National Anthem, you can go play football in Europe or Iraq, Saudi Arabia…or you all can at least remember Pat Tillman or the thousands of soldiers who made the ultimate sacrifice so that you could play football & we civilians could enjoy watching you all play the game that you all love so much….

  9. lphboston says:
    Aug 27, 2016 2:03 PM
    Know this will not be popular, but I’m with Kaepernick.

    ________________________________________

    Good. Get on the plane with him and go somewhere else.

  10. Also, my fervent hope is that some day Kaepernick will be in a dire situation and has to call the cops to get him out of it. Maybe then he’ll realize the good things cops do on a daily basis without ever being recognized for it.

  11. Of the 3,000 odd players in the NFL, there are probably about 1500 who are “blacker” in every sense than white, middle class, suburban raised Squidward. No matter how many affectations he tries to pile on. He’s a fraud in every sense of the word. From scamming the team with his designer surgeon “injuries” to trying to distract attention from his on field failures with human rights babble.

  12. If only Black Lives Matter and people like Kaepernick would wake up and stand up to do something to help with Black On Black Crime and Fatherless Black families which are the major reasons for the so called oppression of Blacks.

  13. I’m sure a cascade of negative comments will come down on Kaepernick but I wonder if anyone will take the time to think about it first. Everyone who blows hard on these comment boards wants their own personal beliefs and ideals respected because; hey this is America! Freedom of speech and what nots! Then a man, worse a famous rich man, has his own ideals and beliefs but they run counter to the majority. Do you respect his right to an opinion? Of course you don’t. You can’t look back and see the same historical actions that granted you your freedoms without judgement or persecution also granted his.

    Let’s also not tip toe around the subject of race. While those big freedoms apply to all Americans, the application of detailed law is not applied the same to everyone. It’s Kaepernick’s right to oppose those forces without intimidation. Sure you can have your opinions but if you really believe in this country you should respect his.

  14. NFL: Players are encouraged but not required to stand for national anthem
    ______________________________

    Maybe, but, respect for those who have died to protect and preserve our flag, and simple patriotism, require you do!

  15. I wouldn’t stand either. How many innocents have died at the hands of this flag in South America, the Middle East and Asian? What about the disgusting Dresden bombings? Go Kaep!!

  16. When you tell the voice of dissent to “go somewhere else” you’re doing something far more opposed to truly American ideals than you are when you sit during the national anthem.

  17. varangia says:
    Aug 27, 2016 2:19 PM
    Typical loser move by a guy who can’t do the job. Now when they cut him, he’ll claim it’s because he stuck up for black people.

    Nailed it! Wish I could give this a thousand thumbs up.

  18. “And so Kaepernick and any other player has the right to not stand during the national anthem. Whether other players will follow Kaepernick’s lead remains to be seen.”

    What will probably not remain to be seen is the number of articles that will continue to be posted about this. Dude has the same right to nonviolently express his idiot opinion as everyone else. Constitutionally guaranteed courtesy of the same nation that is oppressing him and the folks that risked there all that he is disrespecting by sitting.

  19. ReligionIsForIdiots says:
    Aug 27, 2016 2:27 PMl
    I wouldn’t stand either. How many innocents have died at the hands of this flag in South America, the Middle East and Asian? What about the disgusting Dresden bombings? Go Kaep!!
    —————-

    Perhaps the two of you would be happier living in Vatican City.

  20. If only Black Lives Matter and people like Kaepernick would wake up and stand up to do something to help with Black On Black Crime and Fatherless Black families which are the major reasons for the so called oppression of Blacks.

    ——–

    Don’t worry all black people, we have a white guy that never walked one inch in your shoes that’s going to fix everything. He knows what’s best for you and your family. So please, take a knee and soak in all the lessons he has to teach.

  21. Surprised vets are tearing into him. It’s exactly his type of expression whether we agree or not that people fight to protect.

    Plus honestly, how is Kaepernick’s actions even considered as bad as what Josh Brown is accused of? People need to get some perspective.

  22. If this becomes widespread the NFL should take note that it is also not required that we watch or buy tickets – and I for sure won’t be wasting my time watching a bunch of ‘oppressed’ millionaires playing a game claiming they are discriminated against!!!!!!!!!!!

  23. No rule was ever needed. It was done out of respect for their flag and their country. Now,’if the NFL allows players to start making political statements and shows just how racist said player is ? There’s a problem. They don’t want to stand ? As stated, it’s their right. But it’s also a teams right to put them on the next game days inactive list , regardless of who they are. This is complete horse crap and others start doing it and the NFL does not step in there is going to be a back lash by millions of veterans that the NFL could never imagine.

    I guess all of us gave our time and the military display at NFL games really is just BS

  24. well puke on him- this country put money in his pocket – and same with the BLM folks- if they don’t like it here, go back to that third world dump your forefathers were rescued from..

    anyway, he is finished. another flash in the pan..I liked him til I saw what hew as about.

  25. He is merely yet another racist, anti-American, selfish, needing attention black crying aloud trying ot get his way. Earn it! If blacks for the most part didn’t act like wild savage baboons, then the entire world wouldn’t think of them that way.

  26. They should be REQUIRED! to stand and honor the national anthem and the flag… Honor the people who died so they could bitch about a little sweat for millions of dollars instead of being on the t\rack for not being Aryan and forced to speak German or forced to work long hours in a Japanese factory in Detroit. Many a good man ate slept and died in a foxhole in Europe of the Pacific so that sorry black Arshole can be rich and bitch about not being placated too! so kiss my arse Kapernick and every black arse who feels the way he does

  27. If this becomes widespread the NFL should take note that it is also not required that we watch or buy tickets – and I for sure won’t be wasting my time watching a bunch of ‘oppressed’ millionaires playing a game claiming they are discriminated against!!!!!!!!!!!

    But you’ll waste your time posting on a football blog? Stop it. No one cares. No one here knows who you are, so why are you informing us of your future plans?
    See what I just did? I devalued your opinion by implying you dont have the right to voice your opinion, or in laymans terms….the same thing you did to Kap. You don’t have to agree with him, but he can do whatever he chooses as long as it doesn’t break the law.

  28. “If you don’t like this country, get out.”

    That’s the treatment you get if you try to raise a social issue in a country with the inclusive and tolerant history of the USA? You guys are in denial about your country.

    The rest of the world is laughing at your reactions. Myself included.

  29. While we’re on the subject of racial inequity, someone needs to look into why a “black” quarterback is earning 10 times as much money as a white quarterback who is ahead of him on the depth chart and clearly the better player.

  30. He’s just setting his situation up so that when he rides the bench all season he can blame being persecuted for his beliefs and not his performance. What a punk.

  31. You shouldn’t have to be “required” to stand for the national anthem. You should do it because thousands and thousands of Americans have given their lives for that flag and allowed you to live in a free country.

  32. Kap will learn the NFL stands for “not-for-long”. I would support his protest if he were on target, something Kap has had a career problem. For such a smart guy, he should target the 1% – you know, like the NFL owners- who are stealing US blind- black people especially. The 99 percent of US- you know the fools who pay $100 a ticket to watch crap like your performances- are not the cause of your concern. So, Kap, get off your butt and address the overpaid a-holes like NFL owners. It’s not US. It’s overpaid people…like you.

  33. If you don’t like it why don’t you please leave the country and lets see how much money you make somewhere else, (where blacks aren’t oppressed). Your an idiot that just doesn’t even have any business talking about this subject, let alone being in the NFL. You suck as a quarterback and as a person.

  34. Kap has every right to express his feelings because our veterans have guaranteed him that right. We have every right to tell him to go pound sand and boycott any broadcast that has him on it.

  35. I thought that Kaepernick did not stand to show pride in a flag for a country where rich football players have the resources to put a defense team that somehow manages to convince a jury that they did not commit a murder they committed or strike deals with prosecutors to be exonerated even though they were involved in a homicide.

    P.S.: Kaep, you know that I’m talking of OJ Simpson and Ray Lewis, don’t you?

  36. i’m sure some of his linemen have either siblings or very good friends that are police officers or soldiers…hope they don’t “accidently” forget their blocking assignments

  37. Cowardly statement by the NFL and the 49ers. NFL, Take the American Flag sticker off the helmets, you don’t deserve to have them on there. Same organization that is constantly finding ways to move commerce out of the U.S.

  38. Even if NFL doesn’t think it is appropriate to suspend for sitting during anthem, 49’rs should have authority to cut him for his racist comments later.

  39. “Players are encouraged but not required to stand during the playing of the National Anthem,” the NFL said in a statement issued Saturday…
    =====================

    But they are all REQUIRED to give interviews to the press.
    signed – Beast Quake

  40. What about standing for all of the bodies that are filling graves of the men and women (black and white) that have fought and died for this country that the flag represents? What about standing for all of the men and women that are still fighting for this country and that flag?

    And you wonder why racism is still a bigger issue than it should be.

  41. If all us folks the United States are so bad, Kaepernick can certainly give back all the pay we have given him.

    NFL cannot make me contribute to their activities either.

  42. Yes, he has every right to disrespect our national anthem. Just like I have every right to never forget this act. Then when he’s cut from the 49ers, there are 31 franchises that won’t forget. Enjoy the worst decision of your career.

  43. “Fascism simply means extreme collectivism. The individual is worthless and all that matters is the group – in most cases the nation.”

    Seems to me that Kaepernick is using his right to not do as everyone else does. Not think like everyone else does. Not believe what everyone else does.

  44. if Crapnik cannot stand ….then perhaps this country that pays him such a nice salary doesn’t have to pay him such a nice salary….listen sonny, if you don’t stand for your country take a hike… and take a pay cut to minimum wage.

  45. Should he have stood and honored the anthem/flag, sure. But our Soldiers have fought to protect his right to have his own opinion and feelings in this country over many subjects. Nobody was injured by him doing this except for those who get outraged over the daily internet fake outrage.

    Why not try and take a step back and look at what he is trying to say in regards to race relations? You don’t have to agree with one another but at least have the ability to listen to why people are making “stands”.

  46. Colin, one question. Where is your black father? Under my second amendment rights Inhave to ask this. I guess your white Mom,Ms Russo, was a baby Momma.

  47. Just like all other entitled to be here American (you know who you are) the sight of the flag always makes me cry. My problem is that my tears are highly acidic and tend to burn my cheeks. As such, I have to lay on my back during the national anthem (a beautiful song, by the way) in hope that they drain back into my nasal passages. I hope this doesn’t mean I have to move to some foreign country like Puerto Rico or New Mexico.

  48. The fact that Kap can do that without getting arrested is a part of what makes this a great country. His message would have gone largely unnoticed if it wasn’t for the reactions he received.

  49. 250,000 white Union soldiers died to free black people that were caught and sold in Africa by black people. It’d be nice if he just left the country, we already are full of idiots and don’t need another.

  50. Also under my second Amendment right. Colin Kaepernick led a privileged life under the direction of his white adoptive parents. Apparently he was not happy being raised in a white family. Perhaps it would have been better, per his way of thinking , to be raised by Negroe parents that lived in a trailer that lived off of welfare. I know he was a baby and had no choice in the matter as his useless black father was not present. And his White baby Momma Mother could not buy him even the least of stables. Just saying under my second Amendment rights. What or can PFT find his Black Father. Can PFT find Miss Russo , his white baby Momma who surrendered him for adoption, to answer basic questions just sayin. I have as many rights as he has to answers.

  51. ErinAndrewsStopCallingMe says:
    Aug 27, 2016 6:00 PM
    Didn’t a white couple adopt and raise him after his black father fled?
    ————————————
    What does that have to do with anything?

    This isn’t about black and white. There are Asian and black police officers currently on “paid leave” while “bodies are in the street.”

    Guilty conscious?

  52. Didn’t a white couple adopt and raise him after his black father fled?

    ————————————————

    Yeah, we honkies are good like that.

  53. Yeah, we have our problems here in the GREATEST country on earth. But the Blacks are far less oppressed here now, than they once were.
    Racial tension is at the highest level in decades. While we have a Black President….Hmmm.
    Blacks, and all minorities are given opportunities that Whites are not given.
    I would remind Mr Kappernick that this country that is supposedly oppressing Blacks, is also giving him, and many many Black people the opportunity to play a sport that so many dream of.
    Furthermore this country gives him the freedom of speech, and the ability to disrespect the flag. Do that in some places & one would be executed.
    Just food for thought.

  54. Anybody thinking the USA is great because Kaep is “allowed to do something like this” really needs a reality check. There’s probably only a handful of countries where this would actually be an issue.

    Not being a totalitarian state doesn’t make you great, it makes you like more or less every other country in the world. Congratulations, you have freedom of speech/ expression. You must be great.

  55. IF YOU LIVE IN THIS COUNTRY, YOU BETTER STAND UP FOR OUR NATIONAL ANTHEM, OR GET THE _____ OUT OF OUR COUNTRY!

  56. So what happens folks when one of these idiots takes an American Flag and uses it to clean his cleats on the sideline in protest? Because that’s where we are heading. What’s the NFL’s statement going to be then?

  57. Disrespecting the flag just causes more racism. It creates more division and makes it more difficult to reach their very goals. Now y0u should burn down more of your businesses and loot your own stores. That will really send a message (not!). So for the sake of getting attention y’all think making things worse is the answer.

  58. If only Black Lives Matter and people like Kaepernick would wake up and stand up to do something to help with Black On Black Crime and Fatherless Black families which are the major reasons for the so called oppression of Blacks.
    ——————
    And thousands of white people are going hungry and living in poverty in Appalachia. Does that mean you have to address that before you can have an opinion on another issue?

  59. It’s amazing how many non-African Americans feel qualified to have an opinion on how we should feel about the climate in this country.

    I’ll be the white folks in South Africa thought blacks should stand up when the anthem was played even though they were under apartheid.

  60. Protesting by sitting out the national anthem? Kaepernick is stuck in the 70’s; so are the 49ers.

  61. kaepernick just wants attention for his new position as benchwarmer. The national anthem is the only time anyone will be focused on him sitting on the bench.

  62. The NFL runs on money. Your money. If you do not like how the product you are purchasing is being sold to you, do not purchase that product. People do not have the fortitude to not watch or buy the product. So, if you keep buying, expect nothing to change.

    Kaepernick sucks anyway. He is never going to start for a team in the league again. I don’t think we will hear much about him after this season.

  63. The NFL supporting this “Krap” but not allowing Cowboys’ players to wear the helmet decal in support of police shows exactly where that sorry wuss Goodell stands on the issue. He and Krapernick should both be sent to the ghetto so they can help their ‘oppressed people.’

  64. I am proud of him for standing up for black right and all who do not support are nazi because blacks are dying and we have fought for this country,built the country,and pay our taxes in country. This our country we had black people here before white appeared. It said to see whites not supporting us when you come found us.We are all one protect as you would your child .

  65. I am proud of him for standing up for black right and all who do not support are nazi because blacks are dying and we have fought for this country,built the country,and pay our taxes in country. This our country we had black people here before white appeared. It said to see whites not supporting us when you come found us.We are all one protect as you would your child .

    ———————-

    Your drunk go home. Meanwhile black on white crime is sky rocketing.

  66. I don’t see a big issue with not standing up for the flag. They can’t be forced to and there is no rule or law stating that he has to. He is encouraged to stand that’s all. Why get so caught up in with what you believe is disrespectful when it’s not. Focus on how corrupted your government is. Hardly anybody doesn’t know that the history taught in schools is all wrong or who our future president can be? Start making a change instead of following society making it seem like you should stand up for the flag out of respect. Have you even considered his religion too?

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