The Broncos say they will stand for the national anthem on Sunday against the Raiders. No word yet if Brandon Marshall, the linebacker who was one of the first NFL players to kneel in protest of perceived social injustices, will stand or kneel. Marshall is expected to address media after Thursday’s practice.
Through their leadership council, which is made up of about 20 players, the team released a statement Thursday:
“Last week, members of our team joined their brothers around the NFL in a powerful display of unity. It was an emotional time for everyone, including the fans who support us each and every week. As controversial as it appeared, we needed to show our collective strength and resolve. Our voices needed to be heard.
“Make no mistake — our actions were in no way a protest of the military, the flag or those who keep us safe. We have nothing but the deepest love and respect for those who protect our way of life and the freedoms we enjoy as Americans. While there’s no greater country, it’s not perfect. Inequalities still exist, and we have work to do in ALL (emphasis theirs) forms of social justice. We can all do better. It starts with us. We need to do our part and use our platform as NFL players to continue driving that positive change.
“Our locker room is one diverse place, and that’s what makes it so special. It’s where thoughtful, intelligent leaders from all different races, religions and backgrounds come together. We may have different values and beliefs, but there’s one thing we all agree on: We’re a team and we stand together — no matter how divisive some comments and issues can be, nothing should ever get in the way of that. Starting Sunday, we’ll be standing together.”