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Carolina Panthers coach becomes 2nd to say he may kneel alongside his players

Andrew Cuomo

NFL players may see another head coach kneeling on the sidelines when the National Anthem is played before games this season — should it happen, of course, given the state of the coronavirus pandemic.

Carolina Panthers head coach Matt Rhule said in a video conference with reporters on Thursday that he is considering joining his players and taking a knee.

“I would consider anything as we move forward,” Rhule said. “I’m supportive of the cause. I’m supportive of the movement. I’m supportive of social justice. I think for every person, coach or player that will be a very personal decision. I think it has to be made at the right time and the right reason for everybody.”

He added, “”I will support my players with whatever they do, and then when the time comes, I will really think deeply about what is the best thing for me and what is the best way I can show my support.”

The first-year NFL head coach becomes the second head coach that has said they may be willing to kneel. Houston Texans head coach Bill O’Brien previously said that he would kneel alongside his players.

Colin Kaepernick, who was the quarterback of the San Francisco 49ers at the time, began kneeling during the national anthem in 2016 to protest racial injustice. Kaepernick first sat on the bench during a preseason game, but at the suggestion of a former Green Beret, Kaepernick began to kneel.

The movement against racial injustice has experienced a surge in public support after George Floyd, a 46-year-old black man, was killed by a white Minneapolis police officer that knelt on his neck on May 25.

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