Ten New Orleans Saints players kneel during national anthem.

By Scooby Axson
September 24, 2017

Several members of the New Orleans Saints did not stand during the playing of the national anthem before their game against the Carolina Panthers.

The 10 Saints sat for the anthem who sat for the anthem were: safety Rafael Bush, safety Kenny Vaccaro, safety Chris Banjo, defensive end Alex Okafor, defensive tackle Sheldon Rankins, defensive end Cameron Jordan, running back Adrian Peterson, running back Alvin Kamara, running back Mark Ingram and receiver Brandon Coleman.

The New Orleans Saints issued a statement on Sunday responding President Donald Trump's comments about NFL players who take a knee or do not stand during the national anthem.

Trump said those players should be fired for disrespecting the flag.

"Our organization takes great pride in equality and inclusion and find the comments by the President disappointing and inappropriate relative to our players on this issue," the statement said. "Tom Benson served in the military and continues to this day to support all military branches and feels strongly that we honor those men and women who defend our freedoms and our freedom of speech. He also believes that the very players that represent the Saints and Pelicans organizations should be allowed to share or express their feelings. We prefer to take this moment in time and work together, all of us, to stop the divisiveness. Our players and our organization serve the New Orleans community selflessly and do so without care of race, creed or sexual orientation and that makes us a better city and a better team. We believe strongly in honoring our flag and the national anthem and what it represents and we support our players. We all must strive to show that we are all Americans and continue to work towards equality for all. The NFL and NBA, perhaps more than any sports, have the power to bring communities together."

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