Fans react: Raiders’ Lynch, Seahawks’ Bennett take a seat during national anthem

Oakland Raiders running back Marshawn Lynch sat for the playing of the national anthem during Saturday's exhibition game against the Arizona Cardinals in the midst of this weekend's white nationalist rallies in Charlottesville, Va., and resulting protests around the country.

Raiders coach Jack Del Rio told media when he spoke to Lynch after the Raiders game on Sunday to make sure he and his running back were on the same page, he decided Lynch sitting was not an issue for the team.

“(Lynch) said, ‘This is something I've done for 11 years. It's not a form of anything under than me being myself.’ I said, ‘OK.’ I said, ‘Just so you understand how I feel, I very strongly believe in standing for the national anthem, but I’m going to respect you as a man. You do your thing, OK? And we’ll do ours.’ ”

Lynch, who wore a jersey, but no pads on Sunday, did not play in the Raiders’ 20-10 loss to the Cardinals.

Lynch taking a seat on Sunday resembles last season’s actions of free agent quarterback Colin Kaepernick and a handful of other NFL players who sat, kneeled or raised a fist during the playing of the National Anthem to bring awareness to racism and police brutality.

One of those players who has been supportive of national anthem protests and speaking out against injustice is Seattle Seahawks defensive end Michael Bennett. During Sunday’s exhibition game between the Seahawks and the Los Angeles Chargers, Bennett continued his protest by taking a seat on the Seahawks bench while the National Anthem played.

Bennett, who has expressed support of Kaepernick as an individual and the quarterback’s attempt to draw attention to social injustices, plans to sit during the national anthem for the rest season, according to ESPN's Jim Trotter.

After the Seahawks’ 48-17 win, Bennett said the events of the last few months and especially this weekend’s events in Charlottesville, Va. motivated him to use his platform to draw attention to injustice in the United States.

"First of all, I want to make sure people understand, I love the military," Bennett said, according to the Washington Post. "My father was in the military... I love football like any other American, but I don't love segregation, I don't love riots, I don't love oppression, I don't love gender slandering. I just want to see people have the equality that they deserve. I want to be able to use this platform to continuously push the message of that, keep journeying out and keep finding out how unselfish can we be as a society.

“How can we continuously love one another and understand that people are different? And just because they’re different doesn’t mean you shouldn’t like them. Just because they don’t smell the way you smell, just because they don’t eat what you eat, just because they don’t pray to the same God you pray to, that doesn’t mean you should hate them. Whether it’s Muslim, whether it’s Buddhist, whether it’s Christianity, whatever it is, I just want people to understand that, no matter what, we’re in this thing together. It’s more about being a human being at this point.”

Here’s what fans across the League and Americans had to about Lynch and Bennett sitting during the national anthem this weekend:

🅱️🅱️🅱️loods (@TrapGawdd) August 14, 2017
🤔— Demetrius E. Harris (@AuthorDemetrius) August 13, 2017
🦁⚡️ (@lightnbolt619) August 14, 2017