— Gregg Bell (@gbellseattle) September 24, 2017
As mass protests continue to mount around the league on Sunday, the Seattle Seahawks and Tennessee Titans have issued statements ahead of kickoff for today’s game at LP Field in Nashville.
Both teams announced they have come to the decision not to participate in the national anthem.
Earlier in the day, the Pittsburgh Steelers made a similar decision with only Alejandro Villanueva, a U.S. Army veteran, standing in the tunnel as the anthem played.
“As a team, we wanted to be unified in our actions today,” a statement from the Titans read.
“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.”
Seattle issued a similar statement.
“As a team, we have decided we will not participate in the national anthem. We will not stand for the injustice that has plagued people of color in this country,” a statement issued on behalf of Seattle players read.
“Out of love for our country and in honor of the sacrifices made on our behalf, we unite to oppose those that would deny our most basic freedoms. We remain committed in continuing to work towards equality and justice for all.”
The protests come in response to Donald Trump’s divisive comments at a campaign rally in Alabama over the weekend.
At that rally, Trump said any player in the NFL who kneeled for the anthem was a “son of a b***h” who deserved to be fired. NFL owners, coaches and players appear to strongly disagree.