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Who took a knee? How each NFL team responded to Donald Trump's tweets about anthem protests

Members of the Oakland Raiders kneel during the playing of the National Anthem before an NFL football game against the Washington Redskins in Landover, Md., Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. [Alex Brandon | Associated Press]
Members of the Oakland Raiders kneel during the playing of the National Anthem before an NFL football game against the Washington Redskins in Landover, Md., Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. [Alex Brandon | Associated Press]
Published Sep. 25, 2017

NFL players, coaches and owners across the league reacted in various ways on Sunday to remarks from President Donald Trump speaking about NFL players who have protested during the national anthem.

"Wouldn't you love to see one of these NFL owners, when somebody disrespects our flag, to say, 'Get that son of a b---- off the field right now, out, he's fired. He's fired!'" Trump said at a rally in Alabama.

Here's a rundown of how each team reacted during the national anthem at their respective games following President Trump's tweets.



Atlanta Falcons: Two Falcons players knelt for the national anthem on Sunday. They were Grady Jarrett and Dontari Poe. (ESPN)

Arizona Cardinals: Play Monday night.

Baltimore Ravens: Terrell Suggs took a knee. Alongside him was retired Ravens legend Ray Lewis, who locked arms with wide receiver Mike Wallace and linebacker C.J. Mosley. Other coaches and players locked arms during the anthem. (CNN)

Buffalo Bills: "LeSean McCoy who had ripped Trump on Twitter and called him a curse word on Saturday, took a knee during the anthem and later got up and began stretching, then turned his back. There were about six Bills who knelt by unofficial counts of the media, including Jordan Matthews and Ryan Davis." (Jerry Sullivan, Buffalo News)

LeSean McCoy stretches during the anthem(via @JennaCottrell, @WKBW, @13WHAM, h/t @matt_bove)

Carolina Panthers: "Veteran defensive end Julius Peppers was not on the field for the national anthem ... . All of the Panthers players who were on the field stood for the anthem. Peppers walked on the field afterward with a team official. (Joseph Peterson, Charlotte Observer)

Chicago Bears: "Though no players kneeled during the anthem, the Bears stood on the sideline together, and linked arms with each other. Wide receiver Markus Wheaton and safety Quintin Demps stood on either side of coach John Fox, their arms locked with his as the coach put his hand on his heart," (Patrick Finley, Chicago Sun-Times)

Cincinnati Bengals: Most Bengals players locked arms during the national anthem prior to taking on the Green Bay Packers. No player kneeled or sat. "They chose to show their support for our veterans, for our military, for the Cincinnati community by simply standing and staying unified together. They weren't going to let divisive words divide them," coach Marvin Lewis said. (

Cleveland Browns: At least 20 Browns players knelt. Others stood with them and linked arms. There were boos from fans. Among the players who appeared to kneel: top pick Myles Garrett, linebacker Christian Kirksey, running back Isaiah Crowell, wide receiver Kenny Britt, rookie safety Jabrill Peppers, cornerbacks Jason McCourty and Jamar Taylor and defensive tackle Trevon Coley Linebacker James Burgess also knelt and tweeted before the game that he had been a Trump supporter prior to his comments Friday night. Running back Duke Johnson stood and appeared to egg the crowd on when they booed. (Dan Labbe at

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Dallas Cowboys: Play Monday night.

Von Miller among 32 Broncos players who take a knee for national anthem via @denverpost #TakeAKnee #TakeTheKnee

Denver Broncos: "Thirty-two Broncos players took a knee including star outside linebacker Von Miller who locked arms with inside linebacker Brandon Marshall. "Rookie left tackle Garett Bolles stood next to Miller and placed his hand on Miller's shoulder. Kicker Brandon McManus and outside linebacker Kasim Edebali did the same as teammates knelt next to them. Cornerback Chris Harris took a knee and raised his left hand in the air. Outside linebacker Shaquil Barrett and tight end Virgil Green both stood with their fists raised," (Nicki Jhabvala, Denver Post)

Detroit Lions: "Detroit Lions owner Martha Ford and her three daughters stood with Lions players for the singing of the national anthem as part of a broad show of unison before Sunday's game against the Atlanta Falcons. Eight Lions players, including running back Ameer Abdullah, linebacker Tahir Whitehead and defensive tackle A'Shawn Robinson, took a knee for the anthem, but joined their fellow players in linking arms before the game," (Dave Birkett at

Green Bay Packers: Three players, Kevin King, Martellus Bennett and Lance Kendricks, sat during the national anthem. Most, but not all, Packers players locked arms standing along the sideline. (

Houston Texans: Players and coaches locked arms, but no players kneeled. "Texans owner Bob McNair was shown on television standing during the anthem in his suite with his hand across his chest. In addition to the coaches, Texans general manager Rick Smith and vice chairman Cal McNair locked arms during the anthem." (Aaron Wilson,

Indianapolis Colts: Several players took a knee. "Colts who knelt during the anthem included Malik Hooker, Matt Hazel, Kamar Aiken, Marlon Mack, and Al Woods." (Clifton Brown at

Jacksonville Jaguars: At least 13 Jaguars players took a knee, including Calais Campbell, Jalen Ramsey and Malik Jackson. Others kneeling included Tashaun Gipson, A.J. Bouye, Dante Fowler, Dawuane Smoot, Eli Ankou, Abry Jones, Sheldon Day, Myles Jack, Leonard Fournette, Tyler Patmon and Yannick Ngakoue. The rest of the players, and owner Shad Khan, stood and locked arms as did the coaching and medical staffs. (

Trump: "NFL owners should fire players who protest!"Shad Khan:

Kansas City Chiefs: Defensive lineman Chris Jones was on one knee. Linebacker Justin Houston was down on both knees, and cornerback Marcus Peters and receiver Chris Conley each took a knee, too. Nose tackle Bennie Logan had a hand on Peters. Two players were kneeling on opposite sides of quarterback Alex Smith, and tight end Travis Kelce took a knee. (Kansas City Star)

Travis Kelce Kneeled With His Chiefs Teammates Against Racial Injustice & Police Brutality

Los Angeles Chargers: Players stood arm-in-arm and a few raised fists, including Casey Hayward and Adrian Philips, whose hands were clasped together. Five players sat on the bench: Chris McCain, Darius Philon, Brandon Mebane, Damion Square and Tenny Palepoi. Melvin Ingram kneeled.

Associated Press

Associated Press

Los Angeles Rams: Played Thursday, before Trump's tweets. Defensive end Robert Quinn has raised his fist during the anthem since last season. Recently, punter Johnny Hekker has put his arm around Quinn to show support. (Los Angeles Times)

Miami Dolphins: The entire team, including owner Steve Ross, locked arms with at least four players taking a knee. Several players wore t-shirts that read "#IMWITHKAP", in support of Colin Kaepernick, during pregame warmups. (Sun-Sentinel)


Dolphins players are wearing #imwithkap shirts in support of Colin Kaepernick during today's pregame #MIAvsNYJ

Minnesota Vikings: Players stood and locked arms. (USA Today)

New Orleans Saints: Rafael Bush, Kenny Vaccaro, Chris Banjo, Sheldon Rankins, Alex Okafor, Cameron Jordan, Adrian Peterson, Alvin Kamara, Brandon Coleman and Mark Ingram sat on the bench. Thomas Morstead, Marshon Lattimore, Craig Robinson and Coby Fleener stood nearby with hands on teammates' shoulders. (The New Orleans Advocate)

New York Giants: Landon Collins, Damon Harrison and Olivier Vernon knelt, while the rest of the team locked arms, including coach Ben McAdoo with Eli Manning and Geno Smith. (New York Daily News)

New England Patriots: With the support of team owners, players knelt, while others, like Tom Brady opted to stand and lock arms in a show of solidarity. Fans booed at those who took a knee. (New York Times)

New York Jets: Players locked arms. Owner Christopher Johnson also was on the sideline, linking arms with Jamal Adams and Josh McCown. (New York Daily News)

Oakland Raiders: The entire offensive line of the Oakland Raiders, the only line in the NFL made up entirely of African-American players, was joined by virtually the entire team in kneeling or sitting during the national anthem before their game against the host Washington Redskins. Many fans at FedEx Field could be heard booing the players while they sat. (New York Times)

Philadelphia Eagles: Players locked arms with teammates, police officers and military members. Owner Jeffery Lurie and team president Don Smolenski also took part. Linebacker Mychal Kendricks stood off to the side by himself. (

No Steelers were on the sideline during the anthem.LT Alejandro Villanueva, a veteran who served in the Army, stood near the tunnel.

Pittsburgh Steelers: Several coaches, including head coach Mike Tomlin and offensive coordinator Todd Haley, were on the sideline. Players stayed in the locker room. Tackle Alejandro Villanueva, an Army Ranger who served in Afghanistan, stood at the edge of the tunnel, hand over heart. (ESPN)

San Francisco 49ers: Played Thursday

Seattle Seahawks: The team stayed in the locker room during the anthem, and released a statement via Twitter. (Seattle Post Intelligencer)

Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Players stood with their arms locked while Mike Evans and DeSean Jackson went down on one knee several feet behind them, each with their hands on their hearts for the length of the anthem. (Tampa Bay Times)

John McDonnell | Washington Post

Redskins owner Daniel Snyder links arms with cornerbacks Josh Norman, left, and Bashaud Breeland during the national anthem Sunday night.

John McDonnell | Washington Post

Redskins owner Daniel Snyder links arms with cornerbacks Josh Norman, left, and Bashaud Breeland during the national anthem Sunday night.

Washington Redskins: A majority of the Redskins stood, linking arms, with team owner Daniel Snyder joining them, flanked by cornerbacks Bashaud Breeland and Josh Norman. At least seven Redskins chose to take a knee: wide receivers Jamison Crowder, Josh Doctson and Brian Quick; tight ends Jordan Reed and Niles Paul; and linebackers Ryan Anderson and Chris Carter. Several fans at FedEx Field booed the sight of players on both teams kneeling.

The team also released a statement seconds before kickoff: "Football has always served as the great unifier, bringing people together to celebrate the values of courage, commitment and achievement. We are proud of the players, coaches and fans of the Washington Redskins for all that they have done to improve the lives of others in neighborhoods all across our region. We are also grateful for the sacrifices made by the brave men and women of our armed forces that have provided us the freedom to play football. In that great tradition, the Washington Redskins will work to address divisions and bring unity, civility and respect to our greater community." (Washington Post)

Seattle Seahawks: The team stayed in the locker room during the anthem, and released a statement via Twitter. (Seattle Post Intelligencer)

Tennessee Titans: Stayed in the locker room during the anthem and issued a statement via Twitter saying "As a team, we wanted to be unified in our actions today. The players jointly decided this was the best course of action. Our commitment to the military and our community is resolute and the absence of our team for the national anthem shouldn't be misconstrued as unpatriotic." (The Tennesean)


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