The narrative has shifted around NFL players kneeling in protest.
With the widespread backlash against Drew Brees for implying that kneeling is an anti-military stance, it’s clear that social justice protest is back in the NFL. And the same sort of protest that ultimately saw Colin Kaepernick banished from the league will have a different tenor when league play resumes.
With protestors taking to the nation’s streets on a daily basis in the wake of George Floyd’s death, players who intend to peacefully protest police brutality on NFL sidelines aren’t likely to be swayed by pressure that decries the act as unpatriotic.
Why Alvin Kamara will kneel
Brees’ teammate Alvin Kamara intends to kneel. He explained why in a Twitter thread Thursday describing his experience as a black man in America.
My license has been valid for as long as i can remember, but for some reason i still peep the rear view a couple times when a cop get behind me... why? Because that’s what i was taught to do.— Alvin Kamara (@A_kamara6) June 4, 2020
I’ve been in nice restaurants and been asked to leave because i can’t wear a hat, or because i was dressed “inappropriately” for the dining room. But, y’all know that mean i was just too black to eat in there that day lol— Alvin Kamara (@A_kamara6) June 4, 2020
Black boys go from “cute little kids” to “threatening” within the same breath even if all they were doing was walking home. And A man walking in the wrong neighborhood becomes a casualty simply because he looks like he doesn’t belong.— Alvin Kamara (@A_kamara6) June 4, 2020
I can kneel confidently because i know that with just that small gesture, a much bigger message is being conveyed. And also within that gesture the voices of those who no longer have a voice can be heard.— Alvin Kamara (@A_kamara6) June 4, 2020
❤️— Alvin Kamara (@A_kamara6) June 4, 2020
Saints moving forward
Kamara was one of several Saints players who condemned Brees’ stance that “I will never agree with anybody disrespecting the flag of the United States of America or our country” on Wednesday.
He was also one of several Saints players to say that they’re ready to move forward on Thursday after the New Orleans quarterback issued a mea culpa for suggesting that protestors aren’t patriotic.
Whenever the NFL does resume, the politics around kneeling during the anthem will strike a decidedly different tone — on the Saints sideline and beyond.
More from Yahoo Sports: