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Avery Williamson wears 9/11 cleats despite NFL fine threat

NASHVILLE, TN - SEPTEMBER 11:  Adrian Peterson #28 of the Minnesota Vikings runs the ball and tries to avoid the tackle of Avery Williamson #54 of the Tennessee Titans at Nissan Stadium on September 11, 2016 in Nashville, Tennessee.  The Vikings defeated the Titans 25-16.  (Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images) Getty Images

Titans linebacker Avery Williamson went through with his plans to wear red, white and blue cleats to commemorate 9/11 on Sunday, despite the NFL threatening to fine him.

Williamson had initially backed down when the NFL told him special cleats were not allowed on 9/11, but after the Port Authority Police, who lost 37 officers on 9/11, offered to pay his fine, Williamson wore the cleats to honor them.

“I just felt like I got so much support across the country, and especially when the New York and New Jersey police unions said that they would pay my fine, that really meant a lot,” Williamson said, “so I felt like if I didn’t wear them, I just wouldn’t have felt good about it. I felt like I had to do that, just for myself and to represent the people that were lost and the people that do their jobs every day to protect us. I feel like it was just a duty.”

Williamson said Titans coach Mike Mularkey and G.M. Jon Robinson were OK with his decision to wear the cleats. He now plans to auction off the cleats and donate the money to a veterans’ organization, and he said he is also working on treating some veterans to a game.

If the NFL fines Williamson for that, the NFL is committing a serious blunder. Williamson made a nice gesture, and the NFL should support him.

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44 Responses to “Avery Williamson wears 9/11 cleats despite NFL fine threat”
  1. PFT-made-me-change-my-handle says: Sep 12, 2016 5:09 PM

    NFL has dress rules for a reason. So he gets a fine. Move on.

  2. skinsrock says: Sep 12, 2016 5:10 PM

    Good for him. Stand for what you believe in … or sit… or kneel.

  3. imodan says: Sep 12, 2016 5:11 PM

    God forbid an NFL player wears different color cleats. If he is fined I hope the public outrage meets the level of players exercising their right to free speech against the NFL. This goes beyond disrespectful, it’s absurd that the NFL denies honoring the men and women who perished on that day.

  4. seriously423 says: Sep 12, 2016 5:12 PM

    My congrats to you Avery

    and a hearty FU to you Roger

  5. jag1959 says: Sep 12, 2016 5:12 PM

    345 Park Ave only believes in patriotism when they are either wrapping themselves in the flag or profiting from it.

  6. Raider Jon says: Sep 12, 2016 5:14 PM

    Thank you, Mr. Williamson. Much respect.

  7. jjpmn says: Sep 12, 2016 5:18 PM

    You can wear pink for an entire month to support a league approved charity that has been heavily scrutinized for their executive salaries, but you can’t wear red, white, and blue shoes on the 9/11 anniversary. Wow. Do the right thing, NFL.

  8. texaspistoleer says: Sep 12, 2016 5:18 PM

    But the NFL or their corporate sponsors didn’t profit off of it, so you know they’ll fine him.

  9. swineflooo says: Sep 12, 2016 5:18 PM

    Good for him!

    Nfl offices are such hypocrites. U are allowed to disrespect the flag, but not show patriotism.

    Im sure people would line up to pay that fine for him

  10. bobthebillsfan says: Sep 12, 2016 5:19 PM

    Good on everyone who was associated with the wearing of the cleats. I am surprised the NFL did not do more to commemorate 9/11. Its great that the NFL raises awareness of breast cancer. I wish more could have been done to celebrate the lives lost and the pain and suffering endured by survivors, families and friends. GBA.

  11. jasons81 says: Sep 12, 2016 5:19 PM

    As a Titans fan is good to see that not all that happened on the field yesterday was a disaster. Thank you Avery!

  12. aljack88 says: Sep 12, 2016 5:22 PM

    Not a Titans’ fan, but I like this guy.

  13. justafan2014 says: Sep 12, 2016 5:24 PM

    Solid move by Avery, I doubt he allows the police union to pay for the fine if it occurs.

  14. doubleogator says: Sep 12, 2016 5:24 PM

    So this would be a problem but sitting for the national Anthem isn’t….go figure.

  15. bitw44 says: Sep 12, 2016 5:29 PM

    If Roger Goodell and the NFL accept 5k or whatever the fine is from the Port Authority Police to cover this guys fine, then idk what to think.

    Well I do but it isn’t PG enough for the comments!

  16. rodgerstonelson says: Sep 12, 2016 5:39 PM

    Pat Mcafee(punter) on Colts did the same thing.

  17. The Truth says: Sep 12, 2016 5:43 PM

    Nfl is a joke, allow players to totally disrespect law enforcement and the flag but fine them for loving their country. It’s a disgrace

  18. Dizzy D says: Sep 12, 2016 5:50 PM

    Equipment violation. Someone get Ted wells on the line.

  19. maiphatdong says: Sep 12, 2016 5:55 PM

    so this guy shows his pride and gets threatened with a fine, and others kneel and raise their fists and not a word, ……nice

  20. rcali says: Sep 12, 2016 5:57 PM

    See, even you don’t agree with free speech.

  21. dejc421 says: Sep 12, 2016 5:58 PM

    NFL is getting more insane by the day. I can’t imagine ever working for an organization so focused on insignificant bs and making their players miserable.

  22. dbarry14 says: Sep 12, 2016 6:06 PM

    So why can Pat McAfee wear patriotic cleats and not get a fine? Same with OBJ and Victor Cruz?

  23. gfan8611 says: Sep 12, 2016 6:08 PM

    Good for him. Glad he did it. I understand the NFL has to have a uniform code to protect it’s image and interests, but, for this one opening day they could have issued a league memo letting teams know patriotic gear (cleats, gloves, towels) would not be seen as uniform violation. As an aside red,white and blue cleats being worn by a player whose team uses those colors in it’s official uniform really doesn’t seem like it should be a uniform violation to begin with.

  24. charliecharger says: Sep 12, 2016 6:27 PM

    Avery we lost the game. Maybe spend more time preparing for the game plan, and less time preparing your outfit. Coach.

  25. psu7374 says: Sep 12, 2016 6:32 PM

    Nice gesture by Avery to honor the police and
    his country on 9/11. Goodell and the NFL just
    don’t get it. The shield is more important than
    the lives that were lost.
    However, if Avery should be fined, the hard working police from NY and NJ shouldn’t have to pony up for an NFL player.

  26. derekgorgonstar says: Sep 12, 2016 6:40 PM

    I am now an Avery Williamson fan.

  27. kenmasters34 says: Sep 12, 2016 6:43 PM

    Fine him.
    Thumbs up to Kaepernick and Marshall.
    No fines for the Broncos targeting


  28. johnnyballsack says: Sep 12, 2016 6:43 PM

    dbarry14 says:
    Sep 12, 2016 6:06 PM
    So why can Pat McAfee wear patriotic cleats and not get a fine? Same with OBJ and Victor Cruz?

    Avery, McAfee, Cruz and OBJ were all threatened with a fine. Glad that they decided to do it anyway. On a day where many NFL players decided to sit and disrespect the heroes of 9/11 it was refreshing to see a few pay tribute to them.

  29. duffelbagsports says: Sep 12, 2016 6:51 PM

    The NFL is not the hypocrite you folks are. It’s ok for him to demonstrate as long as YOU believe in the cause.

  30. FlashPatterson says: Sep 12, 2016 6:52 PM

    The Titans colors are Red White and Blue though.

  31. accipiterq says: Sep 12, 2016 6:53 PM

    I buy NFL tickets/products plenty. If they fine him, I’ll just stop purchasing products from them until that amount equals the fine he paid. Seems fair.

  32. realtruthteller100 says: Sep 12, 2016 7:02 PM

    this is all most as discusting as when deangelo willaims wore pink cleats to honor his mother who died of cancer outside the league approved october window. he should supsended for the rest of the year.

  33. ReligionIsForIdiots says: Sep 12, 2016 7:10 PM

    Enjoy the fine loser.

  34. patriotsticketssince1978 says: Sep 12, 2016 7:20 PM

    Equipment violations can be very serious in the NFL.

  35. gotitan says: Sep 12, 2016 7:26 PM

    Mularky is going to pay his fine.

  36. ramfanmatt says: Sep 12, 2016 7:36 PM

    The NFL is going to fine someone for wearing 9-11 shoes while they have athletes sitting during the anthem. While the rules do dictate they should fine him for wearing the shoes and there are no rules for sitting on the anthem, the NFL is going to have a major image problem on their hands. One that could ultimately cost them sponsors.

  37. fordbw says: Sep 12, 2016 7:42 PM

    You let one player get away with it and then everyone wants to do it for their own pet cause.

  38. tomtravis76 says: Sep 12, 2016 8:06 PM

    The league office has to fine him based on their own policies ,otherwise players should be able to wear anything they want on game day supporting their personal causes.

    And if he does get fined, he better not take any money from anyone wanting to pay his fine,let them use that money to help people in their causes.

  39. bucsorbust says: Sep 12, 2016 8:35 PM

    Wear patriotic cleats and get a fine and frown from the Commish. Disrespect the flag of the nation and offend at least half the country and get a “no comment.”

    And we wonder some things are so messed up. Just ain’t right man.

  40. rcali says: Sep 12, 2016 8:36 PM

    Way too patriotic for the NFL these days. NFL can’t be happy.

  41. twinfan24 says: Sep 12, 2016 8:37 PM

    While I understand (to/ a point) why the NFL has regulations on uniforms, they need a better procedure to allow waivers from the policy. A player should be able to request a waiver if there is a good reason, and at least have the chance to wear something as minimal as different shoes. I still recall when Peyton wanted to wear some black high tops to honor Johnny Unitas, but backed off when the NFL threatened to fine him. The NFL should just have opening weekend always commemorate 9/11 and allow patriotic versions of whatever gear is allowed to be pink for the breast cancer awareness. If pink on shoes, wrist bands, etc isn’t somehow an issue, then patriotic versions of the same articles of clothing should be fine.

  42. gofor2with3pointlead says: Sep 13, 2016 2:18 AM

    A week’s salary to any one of the previous posts that can define irony.

  43. dartmouthstevens says: Sep 13, 2016 7:08 AM

    I think the NFL should fine the kid, just to keep the “the rules are the rules” However, I think the fine should be $9.11. It makes the point of the rules. It also is a nuisance fine that makes supports his point, but Godell isn’t wise enough to do something like that.

  44. tomtravis76 says: Sep 13, 2016 9:54 AM


    A very big piece in not allowing Peyton to honor Johnny U was that The Golden Arm despised everything about the Indianapolis Colts. He wouldn’t want an Indianapolis Colt honoring him, he was all about Baltimore football.

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