The NFL’s Week 3 Sunday was the scene of protests across the entire league, spurred almost entirely by President Donald Trump’s strong criticism of the league and its players on Friday night. Trump termed any player who knelt during the anthem a “son of a bitch,” saying they ought to be fired for protesting.
Shortly after the Cleveland Browns lost to the Indianapolis Colts, Browns quarterback DeShone Kizer responded directly to the president’s charge. “I know for a fact I’m no son of a bitch,” Kizer said, adding that “it’s a tragedy” that these conversations persist.
At least 20 Browns players knelt during the anthem, with many others linking arms or standing in support behind them. There were boos audible from the Indianapolis crowd, according to local media. Earlier Sunday, Browns owner Jimmy Haslam said in a statement that Trump’s comments were “misguided, uninformed and divisive.”
The Browns have had more experience than most teams with the effects of protests; Cleveland’s police union had threatened to stop participating in the anthem to protest the Browns’ own protest, but the two sides reached an agreement and later took the field together during Week 1.
Jay Busbee is a writer for Yahoo Sports and the author of EARNHARDT NATION, on sale now at Amazon or wherever books are sold. Contact him at email@example.com or find him on Twitter or on Facebook.