Unlike many players across the NFL, no Cincinnati Bengals kneeled during the national anthem today in Green Bay. Instead, many players and coaches stood with their arms locked.
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The team released a statement shortly after kick off:
“Football and politics don’t mix easily. Fans come to NFL games to watch great competition on the playing field and that’s where our focus should be.”
Demonstrations increased across the league Sunday following President Trump’s comments on Friday. Speaking at a campaign rally for Alabama Sen. Luther Strange in Hunstville, Ala., Trump said “Wouldn’t you love one of the NFL owners, when someone disrespects our flag, to say, ‘Get that son of a bitch off the field right now. Out. He’s fired!’”
Reaction to the comments was swift with numerous players chiming in on Twitter and NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell releasing a statement that read, “The NFL and our players are at our best when we help create a sense of unity in our country and our culture. There is no better example than the amazing response from our clubs and players to the terrible natural disasters we’ve experienced over the last month. Divisive comments like these demonstrate an unfortunate lack of respect for the NFL, our great game and all of our players, and a failure to understand the overwhelming force for good our clubs and players represent in our communities.”