NFL players kneel, raise fists, lock arms during national anthem

NFL players across the league protested during the national anthem Sunday in defiance of President Trump, who said that players who kneel during the "The Star-Spangled Banner" should be fired. 

Many players sat, kneeled, raised fists or stayed inside locker rooms as the anthem was played before games, and as team owners encouraged players to express themselves. Others locked arms in a show of unity.

Former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick, who remains unsigned, started the kneeling movement in 2016 to protest racial injustice in America. Activists and critics of the league believe Kaepernick has been blacklisted for his protests. On Sunday, players with the Miami Dolphins wore shirts that read "#ImWithKap" during pregame warm-ups.

The demonstrations began Sunday when the Baltimore Ravens faced off against the Jacksonville Jaguars in London. Nearly two dozen players, including Ravens linebacker Terrell Suggs and Jaguars running back Leonard Fournette, took a knee. Other players on both teams who remained standing locked arms with Jaguars owner Shad Khan.

Jacksonville Jaguars vs Baltimore Ravens - NFL International Series

Jacksonville Jaguars players kneel during the U.S. national anthem before the match, September 24, 2017. 

ACTION IMAGES VIA REUTERS

The Seattle Seahawks announced they would not participate in the anthem as a team. "We will not stand for the injustice that has plagued people of color in this country. Out of love for our country and in honor of the sacrifices made on our behalf, we unite to oppose those that would deny our most basic freedoms. We remain committed in continuing to work towards equality and justice for all,"  the team said in a statement.

Mike Tomlin, the head coach of the Pittsburgh Steelers, announced they would remain in the locker room during the anthem. "We're not going to let divisive times or divisive individuals affect our agenda," Tomlin told CBS Sports.

Here is a look at the demonstrations that unfolded Sunday:

Denver Broncos vs. Buffalo Bills

Denver Broncos v Buffalo Bills

Virgil Green of the Denver Broncos raises his fist during the American National Anthem before an NFL game against the Buffalo Bills on September 24, 2017 at New Era Field in Orchard Park, New York.

 BRETT CARLSEN/GETTY IMAGES

Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Chicago Bears

Pittsburgh Steelers v Chicago Bears

The Chicago Bears lock arms for the national anthem prior to the game against the Pittsburgh Steelers at Soldier Field on September 24, 2017 in Chicago, Illinois.

 JONATHAN DANIEL/GETTY

Atlanta Falcons vs. Detroit Lions

Atlanta Falcons v Detroit Lions

Members of the Detroit Lions take a knee during the playing of the national anthem prior to the start of the game against the Atlanta Falcons at Ford Field on September 24, 2017 in Detroit, Michigan.

 REY DEL RIO/GETTY

Cleveland Browns vs. Indianapolis Colts

Browns Colts Football

Members of the Cleveland Browns take a knee during the national anthem before an NFL football game against the Indianapolis Colts in Indianapolis, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017.

 MICHAEL CONROY/AP

 

Browns Colts Football

Members of the Indianapolis Colts take a knee during the nation anthem before an NFL football game against the Cleveland Browns in Indianapolis, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017.

 DARRON CUMMINGS/AP

Tampa Bay Buccaneers vs. Minnesota Vikings

Buccaneers Vikings Football

Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver DeSean Jackson, center, takes a knee during the national anthem before an NFL football game against the Minnesota Vikings, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017, in Minneapolis.

 JIM MONE/AP

Houston Texans vs. New England Patriots

Houston Texans v New England Patriots

Members of the New England Patriots kneel on the sidelines as the National Anthem is played before a game against the Houston Texans at Gillette Stadium on September 24, 2017 in Foxboro, Massachusetts.

 BILLIE WEISS/GETTY

Miami Dolphins vs. New York Jets

"It just amazes me with everything else going in this world -- especially concerning the U.S. -- that's what you concerned about, my man? You're the leader of the free world... "As a man, a father, as an African American man, as someone in the NFL, as one of those son of b-----s, yeah I took it personally," Thomas told reporters after the game. "But it's bigger than me."

"I've got a daughter and she's going to have to live in this world. And I gotta do what I got to do to make sure she can look at her dad and be like 'Hey, you did something to try and make a change.'"

Miami Dolphins v New York Jets

Laremy Tunsil #67, Maurice Smith #27 and Julius Thomas #89 kneel with Jarvis Landry #14 of the Miami Dolphins during the National Anthem prior to an NFL game against the New York Jets at MetLife Stadium on September 24, 2017 in East Rutherford, New Jersey.

 STEVEN RYAN / GETTY

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Miami Herald @MiamiHerald

Dolphins' Jay Ajayi among players wearing T-shirts in support of Colin Kaepernick anthem protest before Sunday's Jets game. Via @aldiazphoto

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New York Giants vs. Philadelphia Eagles

New York Giants v Philadelphia Eagles

Members of the Philadelphia Eagles link arms during the national anthem before the game against the New York Giants on September 24, 2017 at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

 ELSA/GETTY

New Orleans Saints vs. Carolina Panthers

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Sports Illustrated @SInow

Adrian Peterson and other Saints teammates sit in protest during the national anthem.

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Cincinnati Bengals vs. Green Bay Packers

Cincinnati Bengals vs Green Bay Packers

Green Bay Packers players sit in protest during the national anthem prior to the game against the Cincinnati Bengals at Lambeau Field on September 24, 2017 in Green Bay, Wisconsin.

 STACY REVERE / GETTY

Kansas City Chiefs vs. Los Angeles Chargers

Kansas City Chiefs v Los Angeles Chargers

Justin Houston of the Kansas City Chiefs takes a knee during the National Anthem before the game against the Los Angeles Chargers at the StubHub Center on September 24, 2017 in Carson, California.

 SEAN M. HAFFEY / GETTY IMAGES

Chiefs Chargers Football

Los Angeles Chargers outside linebacker Melvin Ingram knees in protest during the National Anthem before an NFL football game against the against the Kansas City Chiefs Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017, in Carson, Calif.

 MARK J. TERRILL / AP


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