The number of players not standing for the national anthem moved from one to three between Week Three and Week Four of the preseason. As Week One of the regular season approaches, many are wondering whether others will join 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick, 49ers safety Eric Reid, and Seahawks cornerback Jeremy Lane.
For the first game of Week One, coming Thursday night in Denver, will members of the Panthers and 49ers not stand for the anthem? Sources with each of the two teams tell PFT that, for now, there’s no indication that any Panthers or Broncos players will choose not to stand for the anthem.
From Denver’s perspective, the organization isn’t expecting anyone to sit or kneel, and the team won’t be upset or angry if anyone does. For the Panthers, a source with knowledge of the situation said it’s, “Business as usual.” Which means that the team anticipates all players will stand.
With Sunday being the 15th anniversary of 9/11, it will be even more awkward for players playing on that day to not stand for the anthem. For the Thursday game and the two Monday night games, the added elements of respect and honor and national pride that will make it harder to not stand for the anthem won’t apply as strongly.