NFL May Make Players Stand For Anthem

The NFL may institute a rule change that will mandate players to stand for the national anthem, as Adam Schefter of ESPN.com tweets. Commissioner Roger Goodell issued the following letter to team executives and presidents (Facebook link, from Schefter): Roger Goodell (vertical)

We live in a country that can feel very divided. Sports, and especially the NFL, brings people together and lets them set aside those divisions, at least for a few hours. The current dispute over the National Anthem is threatening to erode the unifying power of our game, and is now dividing us, and our players, from many fans across the country.

I’m very proud of our players and owners who have done the hard work over the past year to listen, understand and attempt to address the underlying issues within their communities. At our September committee meetings, we heard directly from several players about why these issues are so important to them and how we can support their work. And last week, we met with the leadership of the NFLPA and more players to advance the dialogue.

Like many of our fans, we believe that everyone should stand for the National Anthem. It is an important moment in our game. We want to honor our flag and our country, and our fans expect that of us. We also care deeply about our players and respect their opinions and concerns about critical social issues. The controversy over the Anthem is a barrier to having honest conversations and making real progress on the underlying issues. We need to move past this controversy, and we want to do that together with our players.

Building on many discussions with clubs and players, we have worked to develop a plan that we will review with you at next week’s League meeting. This would include such elements as an in-season platform to promote the work of our players on these core issues, and that will help to promote positive change in our country. We want to ensure that any work at the League level is consistent with the work that each club is doing in its own community, and that we dedicate a platform that can enable these initiatives to succeed. Additionally, we will continue the unprecedented dialogue with our players.

I expect and look forward to a full and open discussion of these issues when we meet next week in New York. Everyone involved in the game needs to come together on a path forward to continue to be a force for good within our communities, protect the game, and preserve our relationship with fans throughout the country. The NFL is at its best when we ourselves are unified. In that spirit, let’s resolve that next week we will meet this challenge in a unified and positive way.”

The potential rule change may be well received by a large sector of fans, but it will also alienate others while putting the league at odds with a large swath of its players.
View Comments (26)
newest oldest

26 comments on “NFL May Make Players Stand For Anthem

  1. em650r

    It’s about time
    If you disrespect the flag then just leave the US and go someplace else

    1
    3
      • GoSoxGo

        I agree. This has been a protest to draw attention to perceived police mistreatment of black men, and whenever protesters are asked about their motive they explain that it has nothing to do with the military. The problem as I see it is that the protest has NOT generated discussion of police conduct as intended but rather has, inadvertently and unwittingly provoked controversy about the flag itself, the military, and the nature of patriotism.

        2
        0
        • Sports

          Yes, there’s racism in this country and it’s awful that it still plays a role. But,You’re missing the biggest part of the whole issue. FACTS. Provided under the Obama admin & DOJ, shows how wrong & off these players and those that support their beliefs are. Facts show that the police mistreatment & police murder rate of blacks & all ethnicities is such a small tiny fraction of what you believe to be true. Main stream media will never provide you these, but our government does, it’s the law. Simply research this, as there’s been a handful of great articles covering it over the year, it will show you how wrong the argument actually is.

          0
          1
          • mafiaso316

            True,,,, the media will never provide all the facts,,doesn’t fit their agenda

            0
            1
      • GoSoxGo

        The commissioner got to the heart of the issue: “We also care deeply about our players and respect their opinions and concerns about critical social issues. The controversy over the Anthem is a barrier to having honest conversations and making real progress on the underlying issues.”

        0
        1
    • JT19

      While I can see why people are upset, what exactly about kneeling during the anthem is disrespectful towards the flag? Nate Boyer, former NFL player and Green Beret, actually suggested to Colin Kaepernick that kneeling would be more respectful than sitting (what he originally was doing). I don’t remember the exact wording of why it was considered more respectful, but for the most part, Boyer said that some military personnel see kneeling before the flag as respectful (again, he said this before Kaepernick even started kneeling during the anthem).

      3
      0
      • Brooks5Robinson

        That was well heeded advice. I saw Colin last week working at the dollar general …

        0
        1
    • BAINES03

      jingoism at its finest. if the founding fathers heard your blather they’d laugh in your face.

      1
      1
  2. Steven St Croix

    I have not watched 1 minute of any game other than my team all year. If they make the players stand, I will start watching again.

    3
    2
  3. JD396

    The sooner we can quit talking about this the better. It distracts from actually having substantive conversations.

    0
    1
  4. kenneth may

    I played football & other sports for 25yrs. Don’t understand what the hell the national anthem has to do with playing a game. i will watch regardless of who stands or sits before the game.

    2
    0
    • Brooks5Robinson

      25 years is a long football career .. were you a kicker?

      0
      0
  5. mafiaso316

    Sorry Commissioner,,,,,too late to get my almighty dollar again!!!

    1
    1
  6. strostro

    let the players do what they believe in. It doesn’t negatively affect anyone.

    2
    0
  7. Brooks5Robinson

    Just another distraction that divides us instead of bringing us together. Just my personal opinion but I think a team looks absolutely silly when some guys are standing in some guys are kneeling.. I don’t think the best way to unite and bring us together is to have people doing different stuff

    0
    1
    • Brooks5Robinson

      Just a tidbit to add to that. Not one of you here is right or wrong. This entire discussion is 100% opinion…

      0
      0
  8. TDKnies

    I am NOT a fan of forced “Patriotism” but it might be for the best. 99% of the discussion on this has nothing to do with the issues the players wanted to bring attention to despite the players constantly saying their kneeling has nothing to do with what gets people riled up. Probably time to find another way to try to spread their message (and apparently the NFL is even offering to help).

    0
    1
  9. berkyjay

    This would be the last straw for me caring about the NFL. I’ve already had it with their greed. So please Mr. Goodell, give me a reason to free up my Sundays during the fall.

    0
    0
  10. OCTraveler

    Rhetoric by Goodell – it’s all bout the threat about NFL franchises losing the tax benefits they are being given by the government – just another example of bullying.

    Anybody thinking that the NFL protestors are protesting the flag thought Rosa Parks was protesting against the practices of the Atlanta Transit Authority

    0
    0
  11. jgiun1@yahoo.com

    I was thinking of adding a fantasy football point for sitters and negative one for kneel

    0
    0

Leave a Reply