All Seattle Seahawks players stood for the national anthem with arms locked before their game Thursday night against the Arizona Cardinals to honor members of the military. It comes at the start of the NFL's "Salute to Service" weekend in honor of Veterans Day.
Defensive end Michael Bennett, who has sat during the anthem for most of the season to highlight racial and social injustice, said the team did it to make it clear that they support the military and veterans, according to NBC Sports play-by-play announcer Mike Tirico.
Those veterans include Bennett's father, who served in the Navy for a decade.President Donald Trump, among many others, have accused players who sit or kneel during the anthem of disrespecting military veterans and the flag.
Several Seahawks players have sat or kneeled during the anthem throughout the season. Bennett has sat during the anthem since the first preseason game, with two exceptions.
The first was before the Sept. 24 game in Tennessee, two days after Trump called out players who did not stand during the pregame ceremony and called for them to be fired. The Seahawks, as a team, stayed in the locker room during the anthem.The other time was before the Oct. 8 game against the Los Angeles Rams. The Seahawks said they chose to stand to honor the victims of the Las Vegas shooting that left 58 people dead.
Multiple defensive players for the Seahawks have joined Bennett in sitting on the bench during the anthem in recent weeks following the President's comments.