During the 2016 season, the biggest topic of discussion for every game is whether certain players would kneel during the playing of the National Anthem.
Sparked by the actions of then San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick as a protest to police brutality, a number of players joined Kap in protest while others opted to keep doing their regular routine.
Former NFL wide receiver Brandon Marshall was a Pro Bowl-caliber player for the New York Jets at the time and he chose to not kneel in solidarity with Kaepernick. That is a decision he regrets dearly today.
“The first thing that came to my mind, and I’m just being honest, was: ‘I got a mom that don’t work. I got a sister with four kids that don’t work and I’ve been taking care of for 10 years. If I take this knee, what will happen?’,” Marshall told the I Am Athlete podcast (via Timothy Rapp of Bleacher Report).
“And I remember feeling so broken and so hurt that that was the first thing that hit my mind. ‘Do I kneel for the entire community, or do I stand for my mom, my brother, my sister?’ And looking back on it, I am ashamed that I didn’t take that knee.”
The six-time Pro Bowler certainly has a different viewpoint than he did four years ago.
“I am so excited now about with the video that just came out with the NFL players, because now I feel like they don’t have to make that decision,” Marshall added. “They don’t have to think about that anymore. If they want to take a knee, you think Nike’s going to drop them?”