The National Football League players were back at it Thursday night by protesting during the national anthem.
After a quiet Hall of Fame game last week in which there were no protests, there were several demonstrations in the first full week of preseason games on Thursday, including kneel-downs and fists in the air. The NFL and Players Association previously said no one would be punished for protests while both sides attempt to negotiate a compromise. The NFL said in May that players had to stand at attention or stay in the locker room, with teams facing fines and individual players subject to team penalties.
Despite that cooling-off declaration, Miami Dolphins wide receivers Kenny Stills and Albert Wilson kneeled before their game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Stills was a frequent protestor last year. Defensive end Robert Quinn raised his fist, and Philadelphia Eagles safety Malcolm Jenkins and cornerback De’Vante Bausby also raised fists. Eagles lineman Chris Long placed a supportive arm around Jenkins.
Eagles defensive end Michael Bennett, a frequent protestor last year when he played for the Seattle Seahawks, walked out of the tunnel as the anthem played. He spent the song’s duration walking toward the bench.