Houston Texans

NFL Season Kicks Off With Players' Protesting Racism

players made it clear on the night of the season opener that they will continue to shine a light on social injustice and police brutality against African Americans.

The Houston Texans, who were in Kansas City, Mo., on Thursday to face the Chiefs for the first game of the year, remained in their locker room during the playing of “The Star-Spangled Banner” and “ Lift Every Voice and Sing ,” which is known as the Black national anthem.

But after President Trump in September 2017 called for teams to fire players who did not stand for the anthem, the league and its owners tried to tamp down protests while also pledging tens of millions of dollars to groups fighting social injustice.

But in a sign of the new attitude, Cris Collinsworth, a former player who was one of the announcers calling Thursday’s game for NBC Sports, lent his support to the protesters.

About an hour before the Chiefs and Texans kicked off, members of the Miami Dolphins took aim at the league’s efforts to address systematic racism and said they, too, would remain in the locker room during the playing of “The Star-Spangled Banner” and “Lift Every Voice and Sing.”

After an off-season of social turmoil, the Houston Texans chose not to be on the field for the playing of “Lift Every Voice and Sing” and “The Star-Spangled Banner” before the league’s season opener in Kansas City, Mo.

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