DENVER -- In the hours after President Trump praised the NFL’s new national anthem policy in late May, saying players who protest shouldn’t be in the country, one Broncos’ voice resonated above all others: that of linebacker Brandon Marshall.
He called Trump’s stance “disgusting” and said it runs “contrary to free speech.” Then the mics went silent and photographers left. This is a story about what Marshall did next. He hopped onto an airplane and took students from his Williams-Marshall Cares Leadership Program to Washington, D.C.
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“To me, it was all about giving to the community. I had people contact me about it while I was out there. I know I said what I said, and that’s what I stand by, but this trip is for the kids. I want them to experience something different outside of Las Vegas and be able to take a trip to get some culture and get some history,” Marshall told Denver7.
Marshall created his leadership program with a purpose and strict principles: Making the trip required 54 hours of community service, a solid GPA and good attendance. Only two students qualified.
“I wanted to kind of simulate life. Everyone’s not going to get the prize at the end. You have to work for it,” he said. “I know some kids wanted to go and were sad they didn’t get to go, but I’m not going to just give them handouts.”
Marshall remains a man of conviction and holds big dreams for the future. He hopes to provide even more opportunities for kids, seeing involvement as a way to help them make educated decisions.
“God willing, I can stay here and play for the Broncos for another four years,” Marshall said. “I want to give these kids somebody to look up to. I want to create a program and actually be around, like, ‘Brandon is actually here with us. He’s hands on,’ and that’s what I do.”