The NFL preseason is finally here and we have already gotten to see a few teams hit the field in preparation for the 2017 NFL season. While the games do not amount to much, it is still good for first-string players to get a couple of reps of in-game action in before the regular season officially begins.
The Oakland Raiders made their preseason debut against the Arizona Cardinals and lost 20-10, but the most interesting story was Marshawn Lynch’s decision to sit during the national anthem. According to Scott Bair of NBC Sports, head coach Jack Del Rio discussed the situation with Lynch:
I talked to Marshawn to make sure we’re on the same page,” Del Rio said after a 20-10 loss to the Cardinals at University of Phoenix Stadium. “He said, ‘This is something I’ve done for 11 years. It’s not a form of anything other than me being myself.’ I said, ‘So you understand how I feel, I very strongly believe in standing for the national anthem, but I will respect you as a man. You do your thing.’ So it’s a non-issue for me.”
Colin Kaepernick caused a media storm last year when he began kneeling during the anthem and as a result has still not signed with a team. Lynch and several other players have joined Kaepernick in refusing to stand during the song and will likely continue to do so moving forward.
While, the Raiders running back did not play against the Cardinals he should see time on the field as the season gets closer. Lynch’s stance on sitting during the national anthem does not appear to be a problem for the franchise, but the situation is still worth monitoring.