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Broncos' Brandon Marshall kneels during national anthem

Posted: 7:17 PM, Sep 08, 2016
Updated: 2016-09-09 01:06:20-04
Broncos' Brandon Marshall kneels during national anthem

DENVER -- Like it or not, the Broncos are now part of a national conversation on boycotting the national anthem. Brandon Marshall took a knee during the patriotic moment Thursday evening during the season opener against the Carolina Panthers.

Typically, players stand at attention during the Star Spangled Banner, however behind San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick, several have begun taking a stand against what they call "racial injustice."

Kaepernick began boycotting the national anthem by sitting on the bench, saying he won't stand ''to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses Black people." 

He's found pockets of support among other athletes who share his view, and he's also found it in Broncos' Marshall, a linebacker on the team. 

Marshall, who attended University of Nevada, Reno, and joined the same fraternity as Kaepernick, did not go as far as sitting on the Broncos bench, but he did take a knee during the anthem. 

"I'm not against the military. I'm not against police or America. I'm just against social injustice," Marshall said after the season opener was over. "I prayed about this long and hard and decided this is what I wanted to do." 

That may not make Marshall's coach Gary Kubiak happy. Kubiak, when asked about the national movement, defended the tradition.

“My dad taught me two things that I believe in strongly,” Kubiak said. “He told me to believe in my values and those types of things in life and obviously I believe in our country and the national anthem very strongly. But at the same time, he taught me to respect other people’s beliefs and values, so I do that.”

The Broncos released a statement to Denver7 Broncos insider Troy Renck soon after the game began.

“While we encourage members of our organization to stand during the National Anthem, we understand and respect it being a personal decision.”

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