Colin Kaepernick’s national anthem protest extended into the regular season Monday night, when the San Francisco 49ers backup quarterback took a knee during the national anthem before the team’s season opener against the Rams.
Kaepernick was joined by teammate Eric Reid as the two kneeled side by side while safety Antoine Bethea and linebacker Eli Harold raised a fist. Rams defensive end Robert Quinn and wide receiver Kenny Britt were also seen with raised fists during the anthem.
Britt was one of five Rams in 2014 who ran onto the field with their hands up in a sign of solidarity during the Ferguson riots in St. Louis.
Kaepernick has been making headlines for almost a month now after he was seen on the sidelines sitting during the playing of the national anthem late last month before a preseason game. The 28-year-old QB has taken a knee during the anthem in each subsequent game in an attempt to shine a light on social injustice.
“I am not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses black people and people of color,” Kaepernick said after he was first seen sitting during the anthem. “To me, this is bigger than football and it would be selfish on my part to look the other way. There are bodies in the street and people getting paid leave and getting away with murder.”
A number of NFL players around the league also showed their support for Kaepernick’s cause, either locking arms, raising fits or kneeling Sunday, the 15th anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks.