Philadelphia Eagles safety Malcolm Jenkins told Sports Radio WIP that he expects that he and teammates will make a symbolic gesture during the national anthem in the Eagles Monday Night Football game against the Chicago Bears.
Eagles safety Malcolm Jenkins tells us on @SportsRadioWIP that he expects members of Eagles - including him - to make stance during Anthem.— Glen Macnow (@RealGlenMacnow) September 16, 2016
Malcolm Jenkins tells us players have spoken with coach about a potential of gesture during Anthem Monday night.— Glen Macnow (@RealGlenMacnow) September 16, 2016
Jenkins said that Doug Pederson had advised his players to not make a gesture, whether it be kneeling or something else, on 9/11, which the players agreed to.
Jenkins said he and teammates would discuss what it would be, but that it would probably not be a kneel.
Asked if he and other Eagles might kneel or raise fist during Anthem, he said "I don't expect anyone to kneel."— Glen Macnow (@RealGlenMacnow) September 16, 2016
On Sunday Jurrell Casey, Jason McCourty and Wesley Woodward of the Titans raised their fists during the anthem, as did Marcus Peters of the Chiefs, while other members of the Chiefs locked arms, and Arian Foster, Kenny Stills, Jelani Jenkins and Michael Thomas of the Dolphins knelt. And on Monday night Colin Kaepernick, who started the anthem protest in the preseason by kneeling for it, was joined by teammate Eric Reid, while teammates Antoine Bethea and Eli Harold and Rams players Robert Quinn and Kenny Britt raised fists.
Jenkins has spoken about the anthem protest in the past. He supported Kaepernick’s protest but disagreed with the method:
"If you want change and you want things to get better across the country, there's different ways to go about it. What's going to get lost is all the stuff that he was trying to point out," Jenkins said. "I think everybody is going to talk about how him making the money that he does as an NFL player and basically kind of shaming the flag or whatever, shaming the country, is unpatriotic. You talk about troops and being able to honor that, that's what's going to get talked about. It's not going to be about the lives that have been lost across the country, the injustices that are being done to minorities all across this country, that's what's not going to be in the headlines. It's going to be about him.
He also added:
"It's a tough situation, but at the same time, if you've got something that you're passionate about and that's your way of expressing it, you've got all the right to do it. I'm a guy of conviction, I speak out on things I see, so I can't really look at what he's doing and tell him he's wrong."
During the preseason, Jenkins was also a vocal supporter of then-teammate Myke Tavarres’s plan to kneel during the anthem.
“He’s a young player that sees what’s going on in America, who sees all of the issues and wants to do something. I think from that standpoint, I totally agree with what he wants to do. Now, how he chooses to convey that or get that message out there is completely up to him,” Jenkins said. “At the end of the day, the issues are the issues and if somebody else gets offended, then that’s fine because the things that they are standing for are just as egregious.”
Jenkins added that Tavarres has the “full support of everybody in the locker room,” noting how Tavarres realizes he has the biggest platform he’s ever had in his life and that the rookie “wants to do something with it.” Jenkins, who sometimes engages with people on Twitter to discuss racial inequality, is an advocate for athletes to use the platform they have.
Now with the national stage of Monday Night Football, Jenkins and others are taking their stance.
(1) Malcolm Jenkins on @SportsRadioWIP on why he may protest during Anthem: "it's not any the flag or the Anthem itself - it's to push ....— Glen Macnow (@RealGlenMacnow) September 16, 2016
(2) for conversation about social injustice. Police brutality, unequal wages,job opportunities, education and situations that (more)— Glen Macnow (@RealGlenMacnow) September 16, 2016
(3) put minorities at a disadvantage."— Glen Macnow (@RealGlenMacnow) September 16, 2016
This is an evolving story, check back for updates.