With the controversy surrounding NFL players choosing to kneel, sit, or remain in the locker room intensifying, one team has decided to take a stand, literally. The Broncos released a statement asserting the team’s actions last week were “in no way a protest of the military, the flag or those who keep us safe,” and will now be “standing together.”
As reported by Fox News, all 52 members of the Denver Broncos intend to stand for the national anthem beginning this Sunday. The statement, which was posted on the team’s Twitter account, said, “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.”
The announcement comes just a few days after John Elway, a Broncos executive and former quarterback that led the team to victory in the 1997 Superbowl, came forward saying he believes in standing for the national anthem.
Elway stated, “Hopefully as we go forward we can start concentrating on football a little bit more. Take the politics out of football.”
The Denver Broncos also attempted to explain their participation in the demonstrations last week, saying, “Last week, members of our team joined their brothers around the NFL in a powerful display of unity. As controversial as it appeared, we needed to show our collective strength and resolve.”
Von Miller, an outside linebacker with the Broncos who lead the team’s protest last week, said that “we had to do something” after Trump “assaulted” their freedom of speech. This sentiment was mirrored in the Bronco’s statement, which said, “Our voices needed to be heard loud and clear.”
The Broncos also spoke to the original heart of the protests in the NFL, which began during the 2016-17 season, saying, “While there’s no greater country, it’s not perfect. Inequalities still exist, and we have work to do in ALL forms of social justice,” continuing, “We can all do better.”
“Starting Sunday, we’ll be standing together,” was the closing statement of the announcement, indicating that the Denver Broncos did not intend to continue participating in any demonstrations during the national anthem.