Denver Broncos: "Starting Sunday, we'll be standing together"

Raiders WR Michael Crabtree catches touchdown pass against Charges on Dec. 24 2015

When 19 Broncos players out of the team's 53 stood during last week's national anthem, the team wasn't completely united in action.

With so many active-duty and retired members of the military in the Denver and Colorado Springs area - which includes Fort Carson, Buckley Air Force Base and the Air Force Academy - many Broncos players had made it clear after last Sunday's game that it was not a protest of the military.

Before playing the Bills this past Sunday, a majority of the Broncos kneeled during the National Anthem in protest of recent statements made by President Donald Trump.

Broncos general manager John Elway said on the team's website during his weekly address that he believes in standing for the anthem and that "hopefully, as we go forward, we can start concentrating on football a little bit more".

"Last week, members of our team joined their brothers around the National Football League in a powerful display of unity", the players said. "As controversial as it appeared, we needed to show our collective strength and resolve".




"Starting Sunday, we will be standing together".

Outside linebacker Von Miller, who helped lead the team's demonstrations last week, said after that game that Trump "assaulted" their freedom of speech, and that "we had to do something". There was outside belief that the team must have felt pressure from the top to fall in line and stand on Sunday. You got to vote and every time you can't always have your way, so everybody, as a team, in that leadership, we all went with it, and everybody stands.

"He is really week-to-week", coach Vance Joseph said after practice Friday.

"We have not forced these guys to stand.it's been their right to have peaceful protest", Joseph said. How can you make true change with this toxic environment?

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