Rex Ryan suggests that, on his team, it’s mandatory to stand for the anthem

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Plenty of NFL coaches and players will be asked plenty of questions about the decision of 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick to not stand for the national anthem. Bills coach Rex Ryan addressed the topic during a press conference on Sunday.

While Ryan chose his words carefully, his message was clear: On his team, guys stand for the anthem.

“I think first off, it’s an important thing for me,” Ryan said of the national anthem. “I think it’s a way of showing respect for the men and women who have served our country and are currently serving our country and that’s kind of how I look at it. But I have and I understand now that there’s some religious beliefs that don’t necessarily allow that. I had a player, he was really distraught over it, came up and saw me, and I’m like. ‘Hey look, you’ve got to do . . . .'”

Ryan didn’t identify the player who expressed concern or provide a time frame for the incident, and he wasn’t asked to do so.

“Anytime I talk to my team about that, if there’s personal beliefs or whatever that keep you from doing it, I understand,” Ryan said. “But at the same time, you know, you’ve got to look at the gifts that we have, the opportunity that we have to play a great game is through the men and women that serve our country. I think that’s an opportunity right there just to show respect, and I think that’s why when you see our team, every one of us are on that line and that’s kind of our way of giving thanks.”

Making Ryan’s remarks more intriguing than if they came from any other coach is the fact that Ryan previously has made his affinity for Kaepernick as a player clear. Also, Buffalo offensive coordinator Greg Roman served in that role during the best years of Kaepernick’s career. So if/when Kaepernick is available, the Bills are one of the short-list teams that would be obviously interested in him.

If Kaepernick persists in his refusal to stand for the flag, maybe they won’t be.

75 responses to “Rex Ryan suggests that, on his team, it’s mandatory to stand for the anthem

  1. If you work anywhere, you do what they ask you to do, if you still want that job. Doesn’t matter if you like it.

    Good for Ryan.

  2. 49ers fan for 32 years here. Been through a lot, especially from 2002-11. Suffered through Seifert being forced out, Maruicci being forced out, Dennis Erickson, Dr. York, then Jed, Mike Singletary the coach, and Jim “abuh, abuh, abuh” Tomsula.

    Backed Kaepernick last year because he was anti-front office and because of his past play. And I know what this country was founded on, but I can’t back this. Sorry, Kaep, I’m out. I know you won’t miss me, because you’ve got protesting to do, money to count, and other ways to figure out how to get out of SF.

    I don’t see Gabbert being a long-term answer. I’m rooting for anyone to take it over and do great. Maybe it’ll be Driskell, or another draft pick next year. Hoping Chip can steer the ship.

    But I want Kapernick off it.

  3. Not a chance. TT is much better. So is EJ. So is Jones. Way overpriced. In a blue collar city like Bflo., he wouldn’t be accepted for that. He might get pummeled out and about.

  4. After reading hate-filled comment after hate-filled comment over the Kaepernick controversy, I have come to the conclusion that, yes, choosing the tact that Kaepernick chose as a way to support the BLM movement is legitimately offensive to some people. For many others, it’s the most recent and convenient way to express their hate towards anything that challenges their white privilege. I understand both sides, and I can tell you that more hate is not going to fix a situation that is caused by hate. A bridge is needed to bring the sides together and heal the hate with love. I sincerely believe that now is the time for Tebow to step up and be the bridge of love and understanding that will bring the two sides together, so we as a country can once and for all get on with the peace, love, and happiness in life that Jesus had in mind from the beginning. Come on Tebow … now is the opportunity for you to make those prayers of yours come to life. Please, Mr. Tebow. Step up now.

  5. What a brainwashed sheeple just like everyone else who stands for the Natl’ Anthem.

    If those men and women who served our country for our freedoms, then one of those freedoms is choice and we have a choice to remove our hats and stand or not. I always choose not to.

    If Ryan and others can’t recognize the freedom of not standing for the flag then they need to move to N. Korea where they will be more comfortable since everyone there is forced to stand for the flag. Or even pics of their dear leader.

  6. Good for Rex. Kap is wrong for what he did. He’s living the American Dream and he’s too self-centered to even realize it. It’s sad but this is a common theme in America now. Nobody should ever feel so entitled that they forget where their bread is buttered.

  7. Americans really do need to get over themselves.

    Sure, we can have pride in our country, but should we really be proud of the oppression and genocide and war it takes part in?

  8. We have some seriously weak minded folks in this country being poisoned by the liberal narrative, as evidenced by some of these comments.

  9. Based on my earlier comments approval ratings, it’s pretty obvious that the USA thrives on hate and a fake belief in the power of god’s love. So be it. Hate on!

  10. So make it a work requirement but until you do he has the right not to stand.

    It’s amazing he’s protesting the way he feels white America treats black America in this country. So does it make sense that he needs to get white America’s approval on how he should protest their actions?

    If I recall white America told black America not to walk across the bridge in Selma, but they did anyway. What happened? Change!

  11. The men and women in the U.S. military are protecting American oil interests. They’re not protecting the right for millions of drunks to get together to watch football.

  12. I do stand for the anthem because I respect the freedoms I have today, but I don’t like the historical context of the song – i.e. the War of 1812 aka Madison’s War, in which we tried and failed to invade the Canadian territories of an anti-slavery democracy, Britain, in our alliance with a pro-slavery dictator Napoleon who had committed unspeakable crimes in Spain and elsewhere, and a war in which we massacred slaves and former slaves families in Louisiana just in case they sided with the British when they came. And why wouldn’t they side with the Brits? For we weren’t the land of the free back then and nor were we right to wage an ugly (and ultimately ambiguous and pointless) war. Let’s have a song about our successes and modern-day freedoms, democracy and fairnesses (real or simply aspired) and if people don’t want to stand up for it, well, it’s up to them because it’s a free country and we are free to say what we think of them.

  13. strong comments from a guy that signed a player cut for attacking a teammate, then sent him out as a team captain for the first game vs his old team.

    Maybe the best way for rex to show his respect for those that gave all for this country is not to try to lead the league in penalties, then brag about it.

  14. Good for Ryan…but I wonder…how many players will pull a “kap” on Thursday night in support of his point of view? How many fans?

    Holy cow, we already have all Baltimore fans disrespecting the anthem with their ignorant yell of “O” in the “Oh say does that star spangled banner…” line.

  15. I’m betting Kaep has been called things and treated ways no white American could possibly understand. He’s been profiled and labeled and diminished and ridiculed despite his success, wealth, work ethic, community involvement, etc. Good for him for exercising his constitutional right to speak his mind through his actions.

    To the first person to respond “love it or leave it” – you have badly misinterpreted the ideals of our nation and should read the manual again.

  16. “I think it’s a way of showing respect for the men and women who have served our country and are currently serving our country and that’s kind of how I look at it.”

    Yup! Enuff said. Go live somewhere else then Kap.
    He could at least stand and put his hands behind his back, support his team and recognize the country and servicemen that provided him freedom to live in our great country and an American football team that provided him an opportunity and millions of dollars.

  17. Does he really think that sitting for the Anthem is helping anything? What did he accomplish (except to divide more people) ; that flag symbolizes the freedoms that he has (to sit or to make ALOT of money)…. If he wants to change something, DO something- put your substantial paycheck where your mouth is. Bet that won’t happen.

  18. Tune in at 11:00. kapernick, since he is half white, will talk about his white privilege.

  19. Only 1% of Americans serve in the US military. I find that those that serve or have served do not grandstand in ways Kaepernick and Rex both did. I tend to think what the both did was more about their own self promotion.

    Remind me, in what branch of the military did Rex serve?

  20. novajoemicmac says:

    The men and women in the U.S. military are protecting American oil interests.
    =================================

    You couldn’t survive without oil.

  21. tigerlilac says:

    Only 1% of Americans serve in the US military. I find that those that serve or have served do not grandstand in ways Kaepernick and Rex both did. I tend to think what the both did was more about their own self promotion.

    Remind me, in what branch of the military did Rex serve?
    ==================================

    As a retired veteran with 24 years active duty as an infantryman and five combat tours, I can say most of us agree with Rex and would like to meet Kap in a dark alley.

  22. bannedfromchoirpractice….you misread the tea leaves son. It’s not hatred, it’s intolerance for ignorance and stupidity, all of which you put on parade, exposing yourself, perhaps inviting hatred. Some sad humans prefer hatred to being overlooked. I think you fall in that category.

  23. Not sure why Rex or any coach has to speak on this issue. They are football coaches not political hacks. I can’t imagine BB ever commenting on this publicly. Every American has the right to protest and voice their opinion no matter how clueless and ridiculous it may be. Rex is alienating his players that agree with Kap subconsciously which is why you don’t want to divide a team.

  24. A lot of people are talking about it. I’m both for requiring NFL players to stand and not requiring it. Because I’m a Rump supporter. Like Ryan. I feel sorry for Buffalo fans. This team has fallen since they had a decent coach and Jim Kelley.

  25. While Kaepernick was sitting out the anthem, I wonder how many people were in the washrooms. A large number, I suspect. How come we never complain about them? With the anthem being played at every single sporting event, people have become de-sensitized to it. The fact that Kaepernick did this two times before without anyone noticing is probably a good indicator of how low this is on most people’s radars (right or wrong).

  26. Don’t even understand why this is even an issue if the league doesn’t have a rule making it mandatory that he has to stand. If he doesn’t want to stand he doesn’t have to.

  27. I wish people cared about real issues. I see more people responding to this ridiculous “story” than I have ever seen talking about Monsanto or fraudulent Presidential elections. It’s a sad state of affairs and doesn’t bode well for this country.

  28. GReat Job Rex. Appreciate you standing up for the country. I hope this low life jerk moves to some third world hell hole and finds outs just how lucky he is to be an American citizen. Too bad he is one.

  29. Protesting is something that the Founding Fathers never would have stood for. You must always respect authority even if you find it unjust.

  30. I wonder where he “stands” on the 2 fools that murdered Dwyane Wades Cousin ? He gonna make a some kind of political statement about THAT ?
    He’s got an agenda…like some athletes, he’s chosen to
    pick a cause -for good or bad, it’s HIS decision -and one that will ultimately define him as a person, NOT as a player.
    Hopefully he’ll understand that this isn’t so …
    BLACK & WHITE after all. – man of color

  31. Rex needs as many distractions as he can find to keep people from noticing the Bills will miss the playoffs again this season….

  32. Note, he said “if you have a personal belief.” No person should be compelled to perform a religious ceremony, or a national ceremony. No problem with Kap standing up for what he believes in. He’s more American than Trump. He’s scolding the country (by not standing). At least he’s not celebrating the country performing poorly economically (like Trump did in the past). I always get a kick out of someone taking issue with Kap, yet they actually plan to vote for the UnAmerican Orange Dude.

  33. sure why Rex or any coach has to speak on this issue. They are football coaches not political hacks. I can’t imagine BB ever commenting on this publicly. Every American has the right to protest and voice their opinion no matter how clueless and ridiculous it may be. Rex is alienating his players that agree with Kap subconsciously which is why you don’t want to divide a team.

    4 71

    No he’s not. He said nothing about social topics that surround why Kap did what he did. He’s referring to the actual act of disrespect to the flag.
    BB is a much better coach but his not speaking up on this doesn’t make him a better American. You don’t have to like Rex to respect him on this stance. Sometimes he says things that make you go “ugh”. Other times he says things that get the blood flowing: this is one of those times.
    Just becAuse bB wouldn’t say anything means nothing. Rex did and it appears that more People agree then disagree

  34. Lol at the few calling Rex racist. The guy who signed a black player, who broke another black players club was cut by a black coach.

    Like Rex or not, calling him racist is about as factually incorrect as you can get. Unless you’re racist

  35. Freedom of speech is a given right in this country. Freedom of stupidity expressing it is not. Stand up, son….especially on Sept. 11. And worry about getting the starting job back. I would think that’s a bigger priority to you.

  36. It is a requirement by JG that all Cowboys stand for the National Anthem, for the same basic reasons as Rex 🙂 CK is a selfish punk!!

  37. duffelbagsports says:
    Aug 28, 2016 6:05 PM

    So make it a work requirement but until you do he has the right not to stand.
    ***********************************************

    And the Niners have the right to cut him – works both ways.

  38. Did anybody think that perhaps Kaepernick was merely practicing what he’ll be doing all season…sitting on the bench??

    I don’t understand all the fuss. Its COLIN KAEPERNICK! Who cares? Seriously!

  39. I don’t like what Kaepernick did but the fact he has the freedom to make that decision is big reason this country is great and what makes his actions offensive but it’s not a big deal.

  40. @JSpicoli,
    Why don’t you take the time to actually read the constitution of the United States. Right wingers like you always like to bleat about how the constitution is under attack. The first amendment allows Kapernick the right to choose not to stand for the National Anthem. Now get back to your Trump rally.

  41. First time I ever agreed with what big mouth Wrecks ever said!! Time for the 49ers to take the garbage out! He’s starting to stink real bad!! Time for a new rule in all professional sports, you must stand for the anthem, like it or not!

  42. Requirement is the antithesis of freedom. A requirement to stand during the National Anthem contains dangerous levels of irony.

  43. packmanfan says:
    Aug 28, 2016 5:37 PM

    What a brainwashed sheeple just like everyone else who stands for the Natl’ Anthem.

    If those men and women who served our country for our freedoms, then one of those freedoms is choice and we have a choice to remove our hats and stand or not. I always choose not to.

    If Ryan and others can’t recognize the freedom of not standing for the flag then they need to move to N. Korea where they will be more comfortable since everyone there is forced to stand for the flag. Or even pics of their dear leader.
    __________________________________
    Too bad someone didn’t drop you out of a plane over North Korea. See how you love living there.

  44. As long as Ryan is their coach, I will be rooting against the Bills from now on for sure since Ryan is being a dictator and refusing to recognize the freedoms his players have to sit.

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