POLITICAL FOOTBALL: Hear LeSean McCoy, Lorenzo Alexander, Michael Caputo & Others

NFL Anthem Protests & Pres. Trump's Remarks Spark Debate

AP Photo


Last week, only six NFL players protested during the national anthem at NFL games, continuing the movement started last year by former San Francisco quarterback Colin Kaepernick raising his concerns about police violence against minorities.   But President Donald Trump’s comments and tweets saying protesting players should be fired sparked a massive show of defiance. Three teams stayed off the field for the anthems entirely. Other teams locked arms, with some players standing, some kneeling and some sitting.

READ MORE: Trump Comments Loom Large on Gameday | How Loud Were The Boos At New Era Field During Anthem Kneel?   Also: Bills Beat Broncos | Game Day Photos

At New Era Field in Orchard Park more than half the Denver Broncos knelt during the anthem and a handful of Buffalo Bills sat or knelt. When you add up the numbers, about one in eight NFL players did not stand for the national anthem this weekend. With one more game to go Monday night, already more than 200 players chose to protest, according to an informal count conducted by the Associated Press.

LeSean McCoy, who tweeted about the Trump comments Saturday,  knelt, then sat and stretched during the anthem a day after he caused a stir by tweeting, "It's really sad man" and then used an obscenity to describe Trump. Bills Hall of Fame quarterback Jim Kelly joined the team on the field during the anthem and held up his left hand while holding a Bills cap.

"As a president, you are supposed to lead," McCoy said. "I can't stand and support something where our leader of this country is acting like a jerk."


After the game, Linebacker Lorenzo Alexander talked about the protest, which he said he hadn't taken part in before, and likely won't going forward.



"These people don't understand what they are doing. They have no clue what they are doing. They don't understand that it isn't about them. The National Anthem is not about them. It's about the people who died and served in war. It's about the Gold Star families who survived them...

"I think this might be going somewhere that the NFL can not recover from.." 

"If President Trump had bought the Buffalo Bills, this would not be happening. "

-- WBEN Contributor Michael Caputo, former Trump staffer

HEAR MORE FROM CAPUTO on The WBEN Liveline with Susan Rose & Brian Mazurowski


Even though I'm thankful the BILLS won today, I'm really upset and sad about what's happening. And I imagine many of you are too. I love the game of football and all that it means to the players, fans and cities across THIS country...but with all that's going on it's hard. The only time I will ever take a knee is to pray and to thank the Good Lord for what he's given me. We all have our issues. We all need to try and appreciate and understand each other and help each other and that goes for our PRESIDENT TOO. I don't have all the answers. But I do know that we need to UNITE not SEPARATE. I hope next week we can STAND , LOCK ARMS and become ONE FAMILY. ------❤️

A post shared by Jim Kelly (@jimkelly1212) on

From HARDLINE, The WBEN Politics Program (Sunday 10am- 12 noon)
Professor Kevin Hardwick from Canisius College & Prof. Anthony Neal from SUNY Buffalo State with moderator Dave Debo


Here's a sampling of your opinions texted to WBEN at 30930:

  • The president is right. Above all else we are supposed to be the UNITED States, united behind our flag and the core beliefs it represents! 
  • I will no longer support the Bills or NFL or any corporations who support them.
  • Who cares what POTUS says? You support your country and flag. You don't do it for him. You do it for yourself. You do it for the land you live in and love.
  • Using a sports venue for political display is classless. Focus on winning the game not civil protest. I'm done w/ the NFL. The product presented is disturbing!
  • Hey NFL players. GROW UP !
  • I will never ever spend one dime of my money on the Buffalo Bills ever again I will not watch their games I will not attend their games I will not buy merchandise ever again for as long as I live.
  • They can be united on their way to the unemployment office from now on as far as I'm concerned.
  • It's time for us to show these athletes with our entertainment dollars that we pay their overpriced salaries and we disapprove of their political work actions.
  • All these players that joined that protest because they found our presidents words divisive fell to take a step back and realize that people find the protest divisive double standards and hypocrisy on display 
  • I don't want my food server lecturing me during a meal and I don't want overpriced babies lecturing me by actions in what is supposed to be entertainment.

DOUBLING DOWN: For his part, President Trump responded on Twitter, on Sunday as the games unfolded..


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