San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick started a trend of kneeling during the national anthem that eventually included many high profile NFL players. Now, big name players who once knelt are beginning to stand up.
Denver Broncos linebacker Brandon Marshall took a knee during the national anthem before all of the Denver Broncos’ first eight games this year. On Sunday night, Marshall stood during the national anthem before the Broncos’ game in Oakland.
Before the national anthem even took place, Marshall posted on Instagram that starting this week, he would stand for every national anthem for the remainder of the season.
For the 1st half of the season, I’ve been taking a knee for the National Anthem to raise awareness for social injustice and to start conversation about what all of us can do to make a positive change. I’m encouraged with the many productive discussions and progress that has taken place as the Denver Police department has decided to review its use of force policy. I’m proud to have joined so many of my peers throughout sports who’ve also made their own statements. Going forward, I will be standing for the National Anthem—not because everything is perfect, or because I’m changing my stance on things. But because of my hope for what we can become. Just because I am standing doesn’t mean the work will end. There’s much work to be done. I’ll continue to recognize and support organizations that are stepping up as leaders and making a real difference in our community, and I will do my part to be there for those in need. One of those organizations is the Idriss Stelley Foundation, a grassroots organization in the Bay Area that offer free support to victims of police violence. I’ll be standing for them and the family of the late O’Shaine Evans—on Sunday night in addition to making a donation from my Tackle Change program to further the meaningful work of this group. I really appreciate the support from my family, teammates, coaches and fans. I’m grateful for those who have taken the time to hear me out. I’m excited for what all of us can accomplish when we truly work together.
As Marshall mentioned on the post, part of the reason why he stood was to respect the family of O’Shaine Evans, an Oakland man shot and killed by San Francisco Police back in 2014. At the time, reports stated Evans pointed an unloaded gun at police outside AT&T Park before he was shot. All of this leads back to the point Marshall made that he wasn’t only standing for Evans, but also because he believes change has been made. However, Marshall did try and help create a better world while he was kneeling. For every tackle he made, Marshall donated money to organizations that work with youth.
A photo posted by Brandon Marshall (@bmarshh54) on