NFL will play Black national anthem before every Week 1 game
The NFL will play the Black national anthem, “Lift Ev’ry Voice And Sing,” prior to the start of each Week 1 matchup, per The Undefeated.
— ESPN (@espn) July 2, 2020
The anthem will be played or performed live prior to to “The Star-Spangled Banner.”
Jason Reid of The Undefeated reported the NFL and NFLPA are also considering listing the names of victims of police brutality on uniforms:
“Having recently displayed increased awareness about the problems of systemic racism, the NFL, in collaboration with the NFL Players Association, is also considering listing the names of victims on uniforms through decals on helmets or patches on jerseys. The NFL also may produce educational programs about victims, among other plans.”
The NFL has attempted to make advances in empowering Black voices in the league amid a month-plus of social unrest and protests against police brutality and racial injustice.
Commissioner Roger Goodell said in June the league was wrong in its handling of player protests, often subjugating Black voices rather than allowing them to use their platform to call for change. The NFL also revealed a plan to donate $250 million to a variety of causes over a 10-year period.
While the NFL is making strides in this regard, players and coaches alike acknowledge there is a long way to go. San Francisco 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan recently commented on the lack of Black coaches, and Seattle Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll called for a “transformation” and a greater sense of respect for Black players voicing concerns.
Goodell said earlier this offseason he felt football could be a unifier, and the NFL appears to be taking steps in its call for social equality.