Mike Evans stands behind Michael Bennett
Bucs receiver Mike Evans was signing autographs for children after Bucs practice on Saturday. As he signed, he talked about Seattle defensive and former Buc Michael Bennett, who last Friday sat during the national anthem and who says he will continue to do so to fight racial injustice.
Evans sat for the anthem in a Week 11 last season to protest the election of President Donald Trump, but his protest lasted one game.
It probably didn't help matters that Evans didn't vote in the presidential election.
I respected Evans decision to sit. I respect his decision to stand again.
Evans said he supports Bennett and his peaceful protest.
"I would have kept doing it, but there were a lot of factors," Evans said. "My wife, she was having a baby. She didn't want to be stressed out with all of that. And then my team - sitting down there with my team up there. That's my team. Those are the people care about."
Bennett had company when he protested last Friday before Seattle's preseason game against Minnesota. A white teammate, Seahawks center Justin Britt, stood next to him with an arm on Bennett's shoulder.
"That's great," Evans said. "That's what we need. It's crazy. It's getting crazy. The events in Charlottesville. There are so many things going on. We've got to do something as a country about that. There's nothing one individual person can do. We all have to do our part, but we need everyone else collectively."
This is a new wave of protests. I think it will spread. Beyond Bennett and Marshawn Lynch and Malcolm Jenkins, beyond the man who began it all, still unemployed quarterback Colin Kaepernick.
And I give credit to 49ers GM and former Bucs great John Lynch, who has amended his recent comments that the anthem protests, while it was any player's right, was "divisive."
"Not only do I respect it, but I understand the motivations of these players that are trying to do something about it," Lynch said on a San Francisco radio show. "I want to be very clear with that. That's where my heart is."
Good for you, JL.
These protests aren't divisive. And what are they compared to Charlottesville, where Hate mowed down protestors, where evil showed itself?
"I support these men," Mike Evans said. "I'm still with Colin Kaepernick.
He added, "There are kids out there. We've got to show them the right way. That's the only way. People aren't born racist. C'mon now. We've got to show the way."