Five days after a dozen Cleveland Browns players knelt during the national anthem to protest racism and police brutality, every player of the team stood during the anthem prior to Saturday night’s preseason game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
All Browns stood for the National Anthem. pic.twitter.com/BBlDok62Zp
— Patrick Bateman (@NatcyLugosi) August 26, 2017
According to Cleveland.com’s Mary Kay Cabot, Browns legend Jim Brown spoke to the team prior to the anthem and that may have played a role in their decision to stand.
#Browns radio said Jim Brown spoke to the team and told them “do not disrespect your country, do not disrespect the flag”
— Mary Kay Cabot (@MaryKayCabot) August 26, 2017
In a recent interview with ThePostGame, Brown shared his thoughts on Colin Kaepernick’s refusal to stand for the national anthem, saying:
“I’m going to give you the real deal: I’m an American. I don’t desecrate my flag and my national anthem. I’m not gonna do anything against the flag and national anthem. I’m going to work within those situations. But this is my country, and I’ll work out the problems, but I’ll do it in an intelligent manner.”
Browns players have since denied reports that Jim Brown instructed them to stand on Saturday. The team said they met with the Hall of Famer to discuss ways to protest and get more players involved—but he did not tell them to stand during the anthem.