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More than a week after 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick made national headlines and significant social ripples by sitting (and then kneeling) during the playing of the national anthem, Broncos linebacker Brandon Marshall made his own statement Thursday night before the NFL’s regular season officially kicked off.
That’s because Marshall took Kaepernick’s lead and kneeled during the “Star Spangled Banner” on Thursday night.
Marshall and Kaepernick were college teammates at Nevada, and Marshall was quick to support Kaepernick immediately after he first made news last month.
“I support Colin. I support ‘Kaep.’ I understand where he’s coming from,” Marshall said, via the Denver Post. “I definitely see what he’s saying. I support him on that. I’m not mad at him for that. Some people are bashing him on the internet, but I’m not bashing him at all. I support him.”
Marshall made that clear with his decision Thursday, and unsurprisingly, Twitter responded.
Search “Brandon Marshall” on Twitter and you’ll see many racially motivated tweets that reinforce his reasons for kneeling during the anthem
— Aaron Bronsteter (@aaronbronsteter) September 9, 2016
Maybe Brandon Marshall taking a knee was just to raise awareness for Trevir Siemians career statline
— PFTCommenter (@PFTCommenter) September 9, 2016
During the final preseason game last week, Kaepernick’s teammate, Eric Reid, also kneeled during the national anthem, along with Seahawks cornerback Jeremy Lane. Meanwhile, Kaepernick’s jersey is the No. 1 seller in the NFL.
Josh Katzowitz is a staff writer at the Daily Dot specializing in YouTube and boxing. His work has appeared in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, and Los Angeles Times. A longtime sports writer, he's covered the NFL for CBSSports.com and boxing for Forbes. His work has been noted twice in the Best American Sports Writing book series.