I (have) a tremendous amount of respect for how he did it, Rivera said Monday. I think he was trying to find a way to do it the right way. I think he was trying to make sure everybody understood that he has a tremendous amount of respect for what the flag stands for, for the military personnel and the first responders. He did what he thought was right, and (I) support him.
Unlike all other teams that played Sunday and displayed unity in the form of linked arms and/or kneeling in protest during the national anthem, the Panthers �� Peppers not included, of course �� stood and faced the flag at attention, feet at ten and two, left hand down at (their) sides, right hand on (their) hearts, as Rivera described after the game. He said his team needed to think and envision an America that’s free from prejudice.
It started early Sunday in London and continued throughout the NFL as players, coaches and even owners locked arms or knelt during the national anthem.
Wolfe sent a statement to ESPN’s Josina Anderson that outlined why he stands for the anthem and why he believes others should as well. But Wolfe also addressed those who have knelt or stood during the anthem and may in the future.
Wolfe’s statement comes after comments during a weekend rally in Alabama from President Donald Trump that players who refuse to stand for the national anthem should be fired by NFL owners. The comments have drawn widespread reaction from NFL owners and players as well as commissioner Roger Goodell and former commissioner Paul Tagliabue.
Derek Wolfe says he stands for the anthem because I respect the men who died in real battles so I have the freedom to battle on the field. Ron Chenoy/USA TODAY Sports